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Loyalty inducing programs and competition with homogeneous goods

  • Nicolás Figueroa
  • Ronald Fischer
  • Sebastian Infante

    ()

We analyze a market where two firms producing a homogenous good compete by means of two mechanisms: prices and a loyalty bonus. We assume that firms act simultaneously when posting their loyalty bonus and prices. Consumers who purchase from a firmin the first period must return the bonus in case they switch providers in the second period. They fully anticipate the effects on future prices of accepting the bonus and maximize their total surplus over both periods. We first show that there is no equilibrium with prices and bonuses equal to zero. We then show the existence of a SPNE where firms are able to obtain half the monopoly profits using large bonuses in the first period and high prices in the second period. We completely characterize all the symmetric equilibria of the game and show that, in general, firms obtain positive profits even when they compete in prices, the good is homogenous, and consumers are forward-looking. Finally we show that if firms are allowed to discriminate between old and new customers, the standard zero price equilibria reappear. JEL Classification: L13.

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File URL: http://www.dii.uchile.cl/~cea/sitedev/cea/www/download.php?file=documentos_trabajo/ASOCFILE120081008163854.pdf
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Paper provided by Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile in its series Documentos de Trabajo with number 249.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:edj:ceauch:249
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.dii.uchile.cl/cea/

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  1. Basu, Kaushik & Bell, Clive, 1991. "Fragmented duopoly : Theory and applications to backward agriculture," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 145-165, October.
  2. Klemperer, Paul, 1987. "Markets with Consumer Switching Costs," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 102(2), pages 375-94, May.
  3. Klemperer, Paul, 1995. "Competition When Consumers Have Switching Costs: An Overview with Applications to Industrial Organization, Macroeconomics, and International Trade," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 62(4), pages 515-39, October.
  4. Beggs, Alan W & Klemperer, Paul, 1992. "Multi-period Competition with Switching Costs," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(3), pages 651-66, May.
  5. Caminal, Ramon & Matutes, Carmen, 1990. "Endogenous switching costs in a duopoly model," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 353-373, September.
  6. Shilony, Yuval, 1977. "Mixed pricing in oligopoly," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 373-388, April.
  7. Varian, Hal R, 1980. "A Model of Sales," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(4), pages 651-59, September.
  8. Padilla, A. Jorge, 1992. "Mixed pricing in oligopoly with consumer switching costs," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 10(3), pages 393-411, September.
  9. Yongmin Chen, 1997. "Paying Customers to Switch," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 6(4), pages 877-897, December.
  10. Joseph Farrell and Carl Shapiro., 1988. "Dynamic Competition with Switching Costs," Economics Working Papers 8865, University of California at Berkeley.
  11. Sebátian Infante & Nicolás Figueroa & Ronald Fischer, 2007. "Competition with asymmetric switching costs," Documentos de Trabajo 241, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
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