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Welfare losses under cournot competition

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  • Corchón, Luis C.

Abstract

We find that in a market for a homogeneous good where firms are identical, compete in quantities and produce with constant returns, the percentage of wel-fare losses (PWL) is small with as few as five competitors for a class of demand functions which includes linear and isoelastic cases. However with fixed costs and asymmetric firms PWL can be large. We provide exact formulae of PWL and robust constructions of markets were PWL is close to one in these two cases. We show that the market structure that maximizes PWL is either monopoly or dominant firm, depending on demand. Finally we prove that PWL is minimized when all firms are identical, a clear indication that the assumption of identical firms biases the estimation of PWL downwards.

Suggested Citation

  • Corchón, Luis C., 2006. "Welfare losses under cournot competition," UC3M Working papers. Economics we063910, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Departamento de Economía.
  • Handle: RePEc:cte:werepe:we063910
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. C.C. von Weizsaker, 1980. "A Welfare Analysis of Barriers to Entry," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 11(2), pages 399-420, Autumn.
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    13. Guesnerie, Roger & Hart, Oliver, 1985. "Welfare Losses Due to Imperfect Competition: Asymptotic Results for Cournot Nash Equilibria with and without Free Entry," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 26(3), pages 525-545, October.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Münter, Markus Thomas, 2017. "Endogenous number of firms, horizontal concentration and heterogeneity of firms—A note," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 154(C), pages 74-76.
    2. repec:bla:jindec:v:65:y:2017:i:1:p:194-213 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Argenziano, Rossella & Schmidt-Dengler, Philipp, 2012. "Inefficient entry order in preemption games," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(6), pages 445-460.
    4. Ritz Robert A., 2009. "Cost Pass-Through under Delegation," The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 8(1), pages 1-19, January.
    5. Simai He & Xiaoguo Wang & Shuzhong Zhang, 2013. "On a generalized Cournot oligopolistic competition game," Journal of Global Optimization, Springer, vol. 56(4), pages 1335-1345, August.
    6. Corchón, Luis C. & Zudenkova, Galina, 2009. "Computing welfare losses from data under imperfect competition with heterogeneous goods," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(6), pages 646-654, November.
    7. Andrew F. Newman & Patrick Legros, 2011. "Incomplete Contracts and Industrial Organization: A Survey," Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series WP2011-036, Boston University - Department of Economics.
    8. Tsitsiklis, John N. & Xu, Yunjian, 2014. "Efficiency loss in a Cournot oligopoly with convex market demand," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 46-58.
    9. Meunier, Guy, 2010. "Capacity choice, technology mix and market power," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(6), pages 1306-1315, November.
    10. Argenziano, Rossella & Schmidt-Dengler, Philipp, 2013. "Competition, timing of entry and welfare in a preemption game," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 120(3), pages 509-512.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D61 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Allocative Efficiency; Cost-Benefit Analysis
    • 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
    • L41 - Industrial Organization - - Antitrust Issues and Policies - - - Monopolization; Horizontal Anticompetitive Practices
    • L50 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - General

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