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Exclusive dealing as a barrier to entry? Evidence from automobiles

  • Nurski, Laura
  • Verboven, Frank

Exclusive dealing contracts between manufacturers and retailers force new entrants to set up their own costly dealer networks to enter the market. We ask whether such contracts may act as an entry barrier, and provide an empirical analysis of the European car market. We first estimate a demand model with product and spatial differentiation, and quantify the role of a dense distribution network in explaining the car manufacturers' market shares. We then perform policy counterfactuals to assess the profit incentives and entry-deterring effects of exclusive dealing. We find that there are no individual incentives to maintain exclusive dealing, but there can be a collective incentive by the industry as a whole, even absent efficiencies. Furthermore, a ban on exclusive dealing would shift market shares from the larger European firms to the smaller entrants. More importantly, consumers would gain substantially, mainly because of the increased spatial availability and less so because of intensified price competition. Our findings suggest that the European Commission's recent decision to facilitate exclusive dealing in the car market may not have been warranted.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 8762.

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Date of creation: Jan 2012
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:8762
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  1. Steven Berry & Joel Waldfogel, 1996. "Free Entry and Social Inefficiency in Radio Broadcasting," NBER Working Papers 5528, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Villas-Boas, Sofia B., 2007. "Vertical relationships between manufacturers and retailers: inference with limited data," Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley, Working Paper Series qt6gz1t778, Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley.
  3. B. Douglas Bernheim & Michael D. Whinston, 1996. "Exclusive Dealing," NBER Working Papers 5666, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Chamberlain, Gary, 1982. "Multivariate regression models for panel data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 5-46, January.
  5. Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg & Frank Verboven, 1998. "The Evolution of Price Dispersion in the European Car Market," NBER Working Papers 6818, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Ferrari, S. & Verboven, F.L. & Degryse, H.A., 2007. "Investment and Usage of New Technologies : Evidence from a Shared ATM Network," Discussion Paper 2007-035, Tilburg University, Tilburg Law and Economic Center.
  7. Berry, Steven & Levinsohn, James & Pakes, Ariel, 1995. "Automobile Prices in Market Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 841-90, July.
  8. Claudia M. Landeo & Kathryn E. Spier, 2008. "Naked Exclusion: An Experimental Study of Contracts with Externalities," NBER Working Papers 14115, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Boone, Jan & Müller, Wieland & Suetens, Sigrid, 2009. "Naked exclusion: Towards a behavioral approach to exclusive dealing," CEPR Discussion Papers 7303, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Patrick REY & Thibaud VERGE, 2009. "Resale Price Maintenance and Interlocking Relationships," Working Papers 2009-11, Centre de Recherche en Economie et Statistique.
  11. Harvey S. Rosen & Kenneth A. Small, 1979. "Applied Welfare Economics with Discrete Choice Models," NBER Working Papers 0319, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Besanko, David & Perry, Martin K., 1994. "Exclusive dealing in a spatial model of retail competition," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 297-329, September.
  13. Chiara Fumagalli & Massimo Motta, 2006. "Exclusive Dealing and Entry, when Buyers Compete," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(3), pages 785-795, June.
  14. H C W L Williams, 1977. "On the formation of travel demand models and economic evaluation measures of user benefit," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 9(3), pages 285-344, March.
  15. John Asker, 2004. "Diagnosing Foreclosure Due to Exclusive Dealing," Working Papers 04-36, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics.
  16. repec:rje:randje:v:37:y:2006:i:4:p:964-982 is not listed on IDEAS
  17. Michael D. Whinston & Ilya R. Segal, 2000. "Naked Exclusion: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(1), pages 296-309, March.
  18. Peter Davis, 2006. "Spatial competition in retail markets: movie theaters," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 37(4), pages 964-982, December.
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