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Price Dispersion in the Lab and on the Internet: Theory and Evidence

Author

Listed:
  • Michael R. Baye

    (Department of Business Economics and Public Policy, Indiana University Kelley School of Business)

  • John Morgan

    (University of California at Berkeley)

Abstract

Price dispersion is ubiquitous in settings that closely approximate textbook Bertrand competition. We show (Propositions 2 and 3) that only a little bounded rationality among sellers is needed to rationalize such dispersion. A variety of statistical tests, based on data sets from two independent laboratory experiments and structural estimates of the parameters of our models, suggest that bounded rationality based theories of price dispersion organize the data remarkably well. Evidence is also presented which suggests that the models are consistent with data from a leading Internet price comparison site.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael R. Baye & John Morgan, 2004. "Price Dispersion in the Lab and on the Internet: Theory and Evidence," Working Papers 2004-02, Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, Department of Business Economics and Public Policy.
  • Handle: RePEc:iuk:wpaper:2004-02
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Michael R. Baye & John Morgan & Patrick Scholten, 2004. "Price Dispersion In The Small And In The Large: Evidence From An Internet Price Comparison Site," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(4), pages 463-496, December.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Price dispersion;

    JEL classification:

    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
    • M3 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Marketing and Advertising

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