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Product Quality and Market Size

  • Berry, Steven

    (Yale U)

  • Waldfogel, Joel

    (U of Pennsylvania)

Do larger markets offer better products? The question has implications both for theories of cities and for theories of market organization. We document that in the restaurant industry, where quality is produced largely with variable costs, the range of qualities on offer increases in market size, with each product maintaining a small market share. In daily newspapers, where quality is produced with fixed costs, the average quality of products increases with market size, but the market does not offer much additional variety as it grows large. These results are consistent with recent IO theories of endogenous product quality and are consistent with theories of cities that place an emphasis on the consumption advantages of cities.

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Paper provided by Yale University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1.

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Date of creation: Jan 2005
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Handle: RePEc:ecl:yaleco:1
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Web page: http://www.econ.yale.edu/ddp/

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  1. Sinai, Todd & Waldfogel, Joel, 2004. "Geography and the Internet: is the Internet a substitute or a complement for cities?," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 1-24, July.
  2. Jeffrey R. Campbell & Hugo Hopenhayn, 2003. "Market size matters," Working Paper Series WP-03-12, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  3. Ed Glaeser & Jed Kolko & Albert Saiz, 2000. "Consumer City," NBER Working Papers 7790, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Paul Krugman, 1990. "Increasing Returns and Economic Geography," NBER Working Papers 3275, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Bresnahan, T.F & Reiss, P.C., 1989. "Entry And Competition In Concentrated Markets," Papers 151, Stanford - Studies in Industry Economics.
  6. Gyourko, Joseph & Tracy, Joseph, 1991. "The Structure of Local Public Finance and the Quality of Life," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(4), pages 774-806, August.
  7. Thomas J. Holmes, 2002. "The role of cities: evidence from the placement of sales offices," Staff Report 298, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  8. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1975. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 64, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  9. Lisa George & Joel Waldfogel, 2000. "Who Benefits Whom in Daily Newspaper Markets?," NBER Working Papers 7944, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Masahisa Fujita & Paul Krugman & Anthony J. Venables, 2001. "The Spatial Economy: Cities, Regions, and International Trade," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262561476, June.
  11. Shaked, Avner & Sutton, John, 1987. "Product Differentiation and Industrial Structure," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 36(2), pages 131-46, December.
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