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Union Power and Product Market Competition: Evidence from the Airline Industry

  • Neven, Damien J
  • Röller, Lars-Hendrik
  • Zhang, Zhentang

In this paper, we specify and estimate a structural model, which links product market competition and union power. The model has a two-stage setting, in which wages are determined through bargaining between management and unions in the first stage, with a price-setting market game to follow in the second stage. Using data for eight European airlines from 1976–94, we provide evidence on price-cost margins and the measurement of market power in a model of rent sharing. In particular, we find that rent sharing reduces firms’ profits more than it does consumers’ surplus. As a consequence the static impact of unions is more on equity rather than efficiency.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 1912.

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Date of creation: Jun 1998
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:1912
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  1. Borenstein, Severin, 1990. "Airline Mergers, Airport Dominance, and Market Power," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 400-404, May.
  2. Hirsch, Barry T & Macpherson, David A, 2000. "Earnings, Rents, and Competition in the Airline Labor Market," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(1), pages 125-55, January.
  3. Brueckner, Jan K. & Spiller, Pablo T., 1991. "Competition and mergers in airline networks," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 9(3), pages 323-342, September.
  4. Berry, Steven T, 1990. "Airport Presence as Product Differentiation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 394-99, May.
  5. Neven, Damien J. & Roller, Lars-Hendrik, 1996. "Rent sharing in the European airline industry," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(3-5), pages 933-940, April.
  6. Roller, Lars-Hendrik & Sickles, Robin C., 2000. "Capacity and product market competition: measuring market power in a 'puppy-dog' industry," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 845-865, August.
  7. Borenstein, Severin & Rose, Nancy L, 1994. "Competition and Price Dispersion in the U.S. Airline Industry," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(4), pages 653-83, August.
  8. Good, D.H. & Nadiri, M.I. & Roller, L.H. & Sickles, R., 1992. "Efficiency and Productivity Growth Comparisons of European and U.S. Air Carriers : A First Look at the Data," Working Papers 92-22, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  9. Good, David H & Roller, Lars-Hendrik & Sickles, Robin C, 1993. "U.S. Airline Deregulation: Implications for European Transport," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 103(419), pages 1028-41, July.
  10. Corts, Kenneth S., 1998. "Conduct parameters and the measurement of market power," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 88(2), pages 227-250, November.
  11. Panzar, John C & Rosse, James N, 1987. "Testing for "Monopoly" Equilibrium," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(4), pages 443-56, June.
  12. Michael D. Whinston & Scott C. Collins, 1992. "Entry and Competitive Structure in Deregulated Airline Markets: An Event Study Analysis of People Express," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 23(4), pages 445-462, Winter.
  13. Caves, Douglas W & Christensen, Laurits R & Diewert, W Erwin, 1982. "The Economic Theory of Index Numbers and the Measurement of Input, Output, and Productivity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1393-1414, November.
  14. Berry, Steven T, 1992. "Estimation of a Model of Entry in the Airline Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(4), pages 889-917, July.
  15. Encaoua, David, 1991. "Liberalizing European airlines : Cost and factor productivity evidence," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 9(1), pages 109-124, March.
  16. Bresnahan, Timothy F., 1989. "Empirical studies of industries with market power," Handbook of Industrial Organization, in: R. Schmalensee & R. Willig (ed.), Handbook of Industrial Organization, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 17, pages 1011-1057 Elsevier.
  17. Evans, William N & Kessides, Ioannis N, 1994. "Living by the "Golden Rule": Multimarket Contact in the U.S. Airline Industry," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(2), pages 341-66, May.
  18. James A. Brander & Anming Zhang, 1990. "Market Conduct in the Airline Industry: An Empirical Investigation," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 21(4), pages 567-583, Winter.
  19. Brander, James A. & Zhang, Anming, 1993. "Dynamic oligopoly behaviour in the airline industry," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 11(3), pages 407-435, September.
  20. Ng, Charles K & Seabright, Paul, 2001. "Competition, Privatisation and Productive Efficiency: Evidence from the Airline Industry," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(473), pages 591-619, July.
  21. Neven, Damien & Roller, Lars-Hendrik, 1999. "An aggregate structural model of competition in the European banking industry," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 17(7), pages 1059-1074, October.
  22. Jan K. Brueckner & Nichola J. Dyer & Pablo T. Spiller, 1992. "Fare Determination in Airline Hub-and-Spoke Networks," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 23(3), pages 309-333, Autumn.
  23. Hurdle, Gloria J, et al, 1989. "Concentration, Potential Entry, and Performance in the Airline Industry," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(2), pages 119-39, December.
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