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Toward a theory of monopolistic competition

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  • PARENTI, Mathieu

    () (Université catholique de Louvain, CORE, Belgium; NRU-Higher School of Economics, Russia)

  • USHCHEV, Philip

    () (NRU-Higher School of Economics, Russia)

  • THISSE, Jacques-François

    () (Université catholique de Louvain, CORE, Belgium; NRU-Higher School of Economics, Russia; CEPR)

Abstract

We propose a general model of monopolistic competition, which encompasses existing models while being flexible enough to take into account new demand and competition features. The basic tool we use to study the market outcome is the elasticity of substitution at a symmetric consumption pattern, which depends on both the per capita consumption and the total mass of varieties. We impose intuitive conditions on this function to guarantee the existence and uniqueness of a free-entry equilibrium. Comparative statics with respect to population size, GDP per capita and productivity shock are characterized through necessary and sufficient conditions. Finally, we show how our approach can be generalized to the case of a multisector economy and extended to cope with heterogeneous firms and consumers.

Suggested Citation

  • PARENTI, Mathieu & USHCHEV, Philip & THISSE, Jacques-François, 2014. "Toward a theory of monopolistic competition," CORE Discussion Papers 2014046, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  • Handle: RePEc:cor:louvco:2014046
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    Cited by:

    1. Dominik Sachs & Aleh Tsyvinski & Nicolas Werquin, 2016. "A Theory of Asset Prices Based on Heterogeneous Information," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 2051, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
    2. repec:eee:reecon:v:71:y:2017:i:4:p:740-758 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Ushchev, Philip & Zenou, Yves, 2015. "Price Competition in Product Variety Networks," CEPR Discussion Papers 10862, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Matsuyama, Kiminori, 2017. "Geographical Advantage: Home Market Effect in a Multi-Region World," CEPR Discussion Papers 12352, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Mayer, Thierry & Melitz, Marc J. & Ottaviano, Gianmarco I. P., 2016. "Product mix and firm productivity responses to trade competition," CFS Working Paper Series 562, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
    6. repec:eee:reecon:v:71:y:2017:i:4:p:675-689 is not listed on IDEAS
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    8. Sachs, Dominik & Tsyvinski, Aleh & Werquin, Nicolas, 2016. "Nonlinear Tax Incidence and Optimal Taxation in General Equilibrium," CEPR Discussion Papers 11497, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    monopolistic competition; general equilibrium; additive preferences; homothetic preferences;

    JEL classification:

    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets

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