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Consumer Information and Pharmaceutical Prices: Theory and Evidence

  • Granlund, David


    (Department of Economics, Umeå University)

  • Rudholm, Niklas


    (Department of Economics, Umeå University)

Registered author(s):

    In this paper, the impact of increased consumer information on brand name and generic pharmaceutical prices is analyzed both theoretically and empirically. The theoretical results show that an increase in information is likely to reduce the price of brand name pharmaceuticals, while the results regarding generics are less clear. In the empirical part of the paper, the introduction of the substitution reform in the Swedish pharmaceuticals market in October 2002 is used as a natural experiment regarding the effects of increased consumer information on pharmaceutical prices. The results clearly show that the reform has lowered the price of both brand name- and generic pharmaceuticals.

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    Paper provided by Umeå University, Department of Economics in its series Umeå Economic Studies with number 709.

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    Length: 32 pages
    Date of creation: 23 Apr 2007
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:hhs:umnees:0709
    Contact details of provider: Postal: Department of Economics, Umeå University, S-901 87 Umeå, Sweden
    Phone: 090 - 786 61 42
    Fax: 090 - 77 23 02
    Web page:

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    1. Diamond, Peter A., 1971. "A model of price adjustment," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 156-168, June.
    2. Nikas Rudholm, 2001. "Entry and the Number of Firms in the Swedish Pharmaceuticals Market," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer, vol. 19(3), pages 351-364, November.
    3. Meir Statman, 1981. "The effect of patent expiration on the market position of drugs," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 2(2), pages 61-66, 06.
    4. Alan T. Sorensen, 2000. "Equilibrium Price Dispersion in Retail Markets for Prescription Drugs," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(4), pages 833-862, August.
    5. Steven Salop & Joseph Stiglitz, 1977. "Bargains and ripoffs: a model of monopolistically competitive price dispersion," Special Studies Papers 94, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    6. Mats A. Bergman & Niklas Rudholm, 2003. "The Relative Importance of Actual and Potential Competition: Empirical Evidence From the Pharmaceuticals Market," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(4), pages 455-467, December.
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