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Market Structure and the Competitive Effects of Vertical Integration

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  • Simon Loertscher
  • Markus Reisinger

Abstract

We analyze the competitive effects of backward vertical integration in a model with oligopolistic firms that exert market power upstream and downstream. In contrast to previous literature, we show that a small degree of vertical integration is always procompetitive because efficiency effects dominate foreclosure effects. Moreover, vertical integration even to monopoly can be procompetitive. With regard to market structure, we find, somewhat surprisingly, that vertical integration is more likely to be procompetitive if the industry is more concentrated. Our model thus suggests that antitrust authorities should be particularly wary of vertical integration in relatively competitive industries. We demonstrate that the quantitative welfare effects can be substantial there.

Suggested Citation

  • Simon Loertscher & Markus Reisinger, 2011. "Market Structure and the Competitive Effects of Vertical Integration," Department of Economics - Working Papers Series 1136, The University of Melbourne.
  • Handle: RePEc:mlb:wpaper:1136
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Inderst, Roman & Valletti, Tommaso, 2011. "Incentives for input foreclosure," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 55(6), pages 820-831, August.
    2. Volker Nocke & Lucy White, 2007. "Do Vertical Mergers Facilitate Upstream Collusion?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(4), pages 1321-1339, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Simon Loertscher & Leslie Marx, 2014. "An Oligopoly Model for Analyzing and Evaluating (Re)-Assignments of Spectrum Licenses," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 45(3), pages 245-273, November.
    2. Jérôme Pouyet & Thomas Trégouët, 2016. "Vertical Mergers in Platform Markets," PSE Working Papers halshs-01410077, HAL.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Vertical Integration; Market Structure; Downstream Oligopsony; Competitive Policy;

    JEL classification:

    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
    • L41 - Industrial Organization - - Antitrust Issues and Policies - - - Monopolization; Horizontal Anticompetitive Practices
    • L42 - Industrial Organization - - Antitrust Issues and Policies - - - Vertical Restraints; Resale Price Maintenance; Quantity Discounts

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