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Middlemen: The Visible Market Makers

  • Makoto Watanabe

    ()

This paper presents a search-theoretic model where middlemen can emerge endogenously to intermediate between ex ante homogeneous buyers and sellers in the presence of coordination frictions. Middlemen set price to compete in the market, and hold an inventory to provide a high matching service. I show that middlemen's inventories can mitigate trade imbalances and interact with price competition, generating an interesting tradeoff for the equilibrium price determination. The competitive limit emerges when middlemen guarantee excess demand will never occur. Conditions are characterized under which middlemen carry out the short-side principle for the market price to be Walrasian.

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Paper provided by Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Economía in its series Economics Working Papers with number we061002.

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Date of creation: Jan 2006
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Handle: RePEc:cte:werepe:we061002
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  1. Daron Acemoglu & Robert Shimer, 1998. "Holdups and Efficiency with Search Frictions," Working papers 98-14, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  2. Dale T. Mortensen & Randall Wright, 2002. "Competitive Pricing and Efficiency in Search Equilibrium," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 43(1), pages 1-20, February.
  3. Adrian Masters, 2007. "Middlemen In Search Equilibrium," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 48(1), pages 343-362, 02.
  4. Kenneth Burdett & Shouyong Shi & Randall Wright, 2001. "Pricing and Matching with Frictions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(5), pages 1060-1085, October.
  5. Acemoglu, D. & Shimer, R., 1997. "Efficient Unemployment Insurance," Working papers 97-9, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  6. Dean Corbae & Ted Temzelides & Randall Wright, 2003. "Directed Matching and Monetary Exchange," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(3), pages 731-756, 05.
  7. Diamond, Peter A., 1971. "A model of price adjustment," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 156-168, June.
  8. Guillaume Rocheteau & Randall Wright, 2003. "Money in Search Equilibrium, in Competitive Equilibrium, and in Competitive Search Equilibrium," PIER Working Paper Archive 03-031, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
  9. Ariel T. Burstein & Joao C. Neves & Sergio Rebelo, 2000. "Distribution Costs and Real Exchange Rate Dynamics During Exchange-Rate-Based-Stabilizations," NBER Working Papers 7862, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. John Rust & George Hall, 2001. "Middle Men Versus Market Makers: A Theory of Competitive Exchange," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1299, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  11. Clower, Robert & Leijonhufvud, Axel, 1975. "The Coordination of Economic Activities: A Keynesian Perspective," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 65(2), pages 182-88, May.
  12. repec:rus:hseeco:72158 is not listed on IDEAS
  13. Chevalier, Judith A, 1995. " Do LBO Supermarkets Charge More? An Empirical Analysis of the Effects of LBOs on Supermarket Pricing," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(4), pages 1095-1112, September.
  14. Ricardo Lagos & Randall Wright, 2005. "A Unified Framework for Monetary Theory and Policy Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(3), pages 463-484, June.
  15. Alok Johri & John Leach, 2002. "Middlemen and the Allocation of Heterogeneous Goods," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 43(2), pages 347-362, May.
  16. Gehrig, Thomas, 1993. "Intermediation in Search Markets," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(1), pages 97-120, Spring.
  17. Li, Yiting, 1998. "Middlemen and private information," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 131-159, June.
  18. Moen, E.R., 1995. "Competitive Search Equilibrium," Memorandum 37/1995, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
  19. Montgomery, James D, 1991. "Equilibrium Wage Dispersion and Interindustry Wage Differentials," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(1), pages 163-79, February.
  20. Peters, Michael, 1991. "Ex Ante Price Offers in Matching Games Non-steady States," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(5), pages 1425-54, September.
  21. Aguirregabiria, Victor, 1999. "The Dynamics of Markups and Inventories in Retailing Firms," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 66(2), pages 275-308, April.
  22. Robert Shimer, 2001. "The Assignment of Workers to Jobs In an Economy with Coordination Frictions," NBER Working Papers 8501, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Shouyong Shi, 1998. "Product Market and the Size-Wage Differential," Working Papers 972, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  24. Albrecht, James W. & Gautier, Pieter A. & Vroman, Susan B., 2003. "Matching with multiple applications," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 67-70, January.
  25. Spulber, Daniel F, 1996. "Market Making by Price-Setting Firms," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 63(4), pages 559-80, October.
  26. Gianni De Fraja & Jozsef Sakovics, 2004. "Walras Retrouve: Decentralized Trading Mechanisms and the Competitive Price," ESE Discussion Papers 36, Edinburgh School of Economics, University of Edinburgh.
  27. Coles, Melvyn G. & Eeckhout, Jan, 2003. "Indeterminacy and directed search," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 111(2), pages 265-276, August.
  28. Hosios, Arthur J, 1990. "On the Efficiency of Matching and Related Models of Search and Unemployment," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(2), pages 279-98, April.
  29. Faig, Miquel & Jerez, Belen, 2005. "A theory of commerce," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 122(1), pages 60-99, May.
  30. Butters, Gerard R, 1977. "Equilibrium Distributions of Sales and Advertising Prices," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(3), pages 465-91, October.
  31. Eric Smith, 2004. "Intermediated Search," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 71(284), pages 619-636, November.
  32. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521659789 is not listed on IDEAS
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