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Price Competition in Product Variety Networks

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  • Philip Ushchev

    (NRU-Higher School of Economics)

  • Yves Zenou

    (Monash University, Stockholm University, IFN and CEPR)

Abstract

We develop a product-differentiated model where the product space is a network defined as a set of varieties (nodes) linked by their degrees of substitutability (edges). We also locate consumers into this network, so that the location of each consumer (node) corresponds to her “ideal” variety. We show that, even though prices need not to be strategic complements, there exists a unique Nash equilibrium in the price game among firms. Equilibrium prices are determined by both firms’ sign-alternating Bonacich centralities and the average willingness to pay across consumers. They both hinge on the network structure of the firm-product space. We also investigate how local product differentiation and the spatial discount factor affect the equilibrium prices. We show that these effects non-trivially depend on the network structure. In particular, we find that, in a star-shaped network, the firm located in the star node does not always enjoy higher monopoly power than the peripheral firms.

Suggested Citation

  • Philip Ushchev & Yves Zenou, 2016. "Price Competition in Product Variety Networks," Working Papers 2016.59, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  • Handle: RePEc:fem:femwpa:2016.59
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    Cited by:

    1. Sergey Kokovin & Maxim Goryunov & Takatoshi Tabuchi, 2017. "Continuous Spatial Monopolistic Competition: Matching Goods With Consumers," HSE Working papers WP BRP 173/EC/2017, National Research University Higher School of Economics.
    2. Jacques-Francois Thisse & Philip Ushchev, 2016. "Monopolistic Competition Without Apology," HSE Working papers WP BRP 141/EC/2016, National Research University Higher School of Economics.
    3. Chen, Ying-Ju & Zenou, Yves & Zhou, Junjie, 2015. "Competitive pricing strategies in social networks," CEPR Discussion Papers 10857, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Panebianco, Fabrizio & Verdier, Thierry & Zenou, Yves, 2016. "Innovation, Pricing and Targeting in Networks," CEPR Discussion Papers 11398, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Networks; Product Variety; Monopolistic Competition; Spatial Competition;

    JEL classification:

    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
    • 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

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