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On the Existence of Cournot Equilibrium


  • Novshek, William.


This paper examines the existence of n-firm Cournot equilibrium in a market for a single homogeneous commodity. It proves that if each firm's marginal revenue declines as the aggregate output of other firms increases (which is implied by concave inverse demand) then a Cournot equilibrium exists, without assuming that firms have nondecreasing marginal cost or identical technologies. Also, if the marginal revenue condition fails at a "potential optimal output", there is a set of firms such that no Cournot equilibrium exists. The paper also contains an example of nonexistence with two nonidentical firms, each with constant returns to scale production.
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Suggested Citation

  • Novshek, William., 1984. "On the Existence of Cournot Equilibrium," Working Papers 517, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  • Handle: RePEc:clt:sswopa:517

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