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Risk-Averse Firms in Oligopoly

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  • Asplund, Marcus

    (Dept. of Economics, Stockholm School of Economics)

Abstract

Does risk aversion lead to softer or fiercer competition? To give a complete answer, I provide a framework that can accommodate a wide range of alternative assumptions regarding the nature of competition and types of uncertainty. I show how more risk aversion will influence a firm's best response strategies, and that competition is unambiguously softer only in case of marginal cost uncertainty. In contrast to risk neutrality, the best response strategies depend on the level of fixed costs. This fact is extended to cover strategic investment models, and to analyse the importance of accumulated profits. I conclude by a discussion of how it is possible to test for risk-averse behaviour in oligopoly by conditioning on the type of uncertainty.

Suggested Citation

  • Asplund, Marcus, 1995. "Risk-Averse Firms in Oligopoly," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 69, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 23 Feb 2000.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:hastef:0069
    Note: Previous title: Oligopoly and Risk Aversion
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Oligopoly; risk aversion; fixed costs; strategic investment; second order stochastic dominance; background risk; market risk;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • L21 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Business Objectives of the Firm

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