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Second-Hand Markets and Collusion by Manufacturers of Semidurable Goods

  • Pasquale Schiraldi

    ()

    (Department of Economics, Boston University)

I show that when oligopolistic firms manufacture semidurable goods, second-hand\par markets can play a key role in supporting collusive behavior. This in spite of the fact\par that a monopolist manufacturer has an incentive to eliminate second-hand markets \endash\par a point made by a number of authors. The idea that second-hand markets facilitate\par collusion is supported by the many examples in which manufacturers strengthen secondhands\par markets, e.g. by providing warranty coverage across owners, or by encouraging\par dealers to accept trade-ins. The intuition is that the prospect of obtaining a high\par price in a second-hand market increases the demand for new goods. This means that\par the expectation of a price war unleashed by the violation of a collusive agreement will\par decrease not only the future prices of the new and used goods but also the current price\par of the new good, thus making the defection itself less profitable. In this framework,\par I analyze the role of leasing policies, buyback policies and warranty coverage for used\par units.

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Paper provided by Boston University - Department of Economics in its series Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series with number WP2006-028.

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Length: 22 pages
Date of creation: May 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bos:wpaper:wp2006-028
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Web page: http://www.bu.edu/econ/

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  1. ANDERSON, Simon P. & GINSBURGH, Victor A., . "Price discrimination via second-hand markets," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1078, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  2. Dmitriy Stolyarov, 2002. "Turnover of Used Durables in a Stationary Equilibrium: Are Older Goods Traded More?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(6), pages 1390-1413, December.
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  4. Michael Waldman, 2003. "Durable Goods Theory for Real World Markets," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 17(1), pages 131-154, Winter.
  5. Waldman, Michael, 1997. "Eliminating the Market for Secondhand Goods: An Alternative Explanation for Leasing," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 40(1), pages 61-92, April.
  6. Faruk Gul, 1987. "Noncooperative Collusion in Durable Goods Oligopoly," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 18(2), pages 248-254, Summer.
  7. Igal Hendel & Alessandro Lizzeri, 1998. "The Role of Leasing under Adverse Selection," NBER Working Papers 6577, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Robert H. Porter & Peter Sattler, 1999. "Patterns of Trade in the Market for Used Durables: Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 7149, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  18. Lawrence M. Ausubel & Raymond J. Deneckere, 1987. "One is Almost Enough for Monopoly," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 18(2), pages 255-274, Summer.
  19. Biehl, Andrew R, 2001. "Durable-Goods Monopoly with Stochastic Values," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 32(3), pages 565-77, Autumn.
  20. Michael Waldman, 1996. "Planned Obsolescence and the R&D Decision," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 27(3), pages 583-595, Autumn.
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  23. Swan, Peter L, 1980. "Alcoa: The Influence of Recycling on Monopoly Power," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(1), pages 76-99, February.
  24. Susanna Esteban & Matthew Shum, 2007. "Durable-goods oligopoly with secondary markets: the case of automobiles," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 38(2), pages 332-354, 06.
  25. K. Sudhir, 2001. "Competitive Pricing Behavior in the US Auto Market: A Structural Analysis," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm228, Yale School of Management.
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