Market Transparency, Competitive Pressure and Price Volatility
In this paper we analyse the role of asymmetric information between firms and consumers about market conditions. In standard models of oligopoly informational advantages of firms over customers do not play a role because all prices are observable. When customers are unable to observe all relevant prices in the market, however, they will attempt to infer the level of unobserved prices from those they can observe. This generates an incentive to use price policies to signal the price realizations of rivals. We show that even with arbitrarily low levels of uncertainty about marginal costs of production, equilibrium prices and price variability are strictly higher in a market with private information about costs. We show how firms can exploit this effect to relax competition through information exchange and analyse the role of advertising in such markets.
|Date of creation:||Sep 1996|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: 44 - 20 - 7183 8801
Fax: 44 - 20 - 7183 8820
|Order Information:|| Email: |
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:1472. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ()
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.