IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Is Cartelisation Profitable? A Case Study of the Rhenish Westphalian Coal Syndicate, 1893-1913

  • Thorsten Lübbers

    ()

    (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods)

Registered author(s):

    We examine the effect of one of the presumably most powerful cartels ever on the profitability of its members. More precisely, we consider the Rhenish-Westphalian Coal Syndicate, a coal cartel that operated in Imperial Germany in the late 19th and early 20th century, using a newly constructed dataset and two different methodological approaches. At first, we employ event study methodology to asses the reaction of the stock market to the foundation of the cartel and two major revisions of its original contract. Furthermore, we look at different performance measures calculated from accounting and financial data in a dynamic panel data framework. Overall, our results suggest that the investigated cartel had no significant effect on the profitabil-ity of its members. However, we also find that it was able to stabilise coal prices and powerful enough to ensure that on average, prices were set high enough to avert negative repercussions on company performance.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL: http://www.coll.mpg.de/pdf_dat/2009_09online.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Paper provided by Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods in its series Working Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods with number 2009_09.

    as
    in new window

    Length:
    Date of creation: Mar 2009
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:mpg:wpaper:2009_09
    Contact details of provider: Postal: Kurt-Schumacher-Str. 10 - D- 53113 Bonn
    Phone: +49-(0)228 / 91416-0
    Fax: +49-(0)228 / 91416-55
    Web page: http://www.coll.mpg.de/
    Email:


    More information through EDIRC

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    as in new window
    1. Green, Edward J. & Porter, Robert H., 1982. "Noncooperative Collusion Under Imperfect Price Information," Working Papers 367, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
    2. Anderson, T. W. & Hsiao, Cheng, 1982. "Formulation and estimation of dynamic models using panel data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 47-82, January.
    3. Gelman, Sergey & Burhop, Carsten, 2008. "Taxation, regulation and the information efficiency of the Berlin stock exchange, 1892–1913," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 12(01), pages 39-66, April.
    4. Bosch, Jean-Claude & Eckard, E Woodrow, Jr, 1991. "The Profitability of Price Fixing: Evidence from Stock Market Reaction to Federal Indictments," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(2), pages 309-17, May.
    5. Robert J. Shiller, 1980. "Do Stock Prices Move Too Much to be Justified by Subsequent Changes in Dividends?," NBER Working Papers 0456, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Nickell, Stephen J, 1981. "Biases in Dynamic Models with Fixed Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(6), pages 1417-26, November.
    7. Arellano, Manuel & Bond, Stephen, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(2), pages 277-97, April.
    8. Bittner, Thomas, 2005. "An event study of the Rhenish-Westphalian Coal Syndicate," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 9(03), pages 337-364, December.
    9. Sanford Grossman & Oliver Hart, . "Corporate Financial Structure and Managerial Incentives," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 21-79, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
    10. Baltzer, Markus, 2006. "Cross-listed stocks as an information vehicle of speculation: Evidence from European cross-listings in the early 1870s," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 10(03), pages 301-327, December.
    11. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521810203 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Robert G. Chambers & John Quiggin, 2003. "Price Stabilization and the Risk-Averse Firm," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 85(2), pages 336-347.
    13. repec:cup:jechis:v:60:y:2008:i:01:p:216-231_00 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Davidson, Carl & Deneckere, Raymond J, 1990. "Excess Capacity and Collusion," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 31(3), pages 521-41, August.
    15. Brown, Stephen J. & Warner, Jerold B., 1985. "Using daily stock returns : The case of event studies," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 3-31, March.
    16. Burhop, Carsten & Wolff, Guntram B., 2005. "A Compromise Estimate of German Net National Product, 1851 1913, and its Implications for Growth and Business Cycles," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 65(03), pages 613-657, September.
    17. A. Craig MacKinlay, 1997. "Event Studies in Economics and Finance," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(1), pages 13-39, March.
    18. Ken B. Cyree & Ramon P. DeGennaro, 2001. "A generalized method for detecting abnormal returns and changes in systematic risk," Working Paper 2001-8, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
    19. Engle, Robert F, 1982. "Autoregressive Conditional Heteroscedasticity with Estimates of the Variance of United Kingdom Inflation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(4), pages 987-1007, July.
    20. Pedro L. MarÌn & Richard Sicotte, 2003. "Exclusive Contracts And Market Power: Evidence From Ocean Shipping," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(2), pages 193-214, 06.
    21. Deneckere, R., 1983. "Duopoly supergames with product differentiation," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 11(1-2), pages 37-42.
    22. Myers, Stewart C., 1977. "Determinants of corporate borrowing," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 147-175, November.
    23. Thomas Gehrig & Caroline Fohlin, 2006. "Trading Costs in Early Securities Markets: The Case of the Berlin Stock Exchange 1880–1910," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 10(4), pages 587-612, December.
    24. J. Bradford De Long & Marco Becht, . "`Excess Volatility' in the German Stock Market, 1876-1990," J. Bradford De Long's Working Papers _134, University of California at Berkeley, Economics Department.
    25. Servaes, Henri, 1996. " The Value of Diversification during the Conglomerate Merger Wave," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 51(4), pages 1201-25, September.
    26. Judson, Ruth A. & Owen, Ann L., 1999. "Estimating dynamic panel data models: a guide for macroeconomists," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 9-15, October.
    27. Lindenberg, Eric B & Ross, Stephen A, 1981. "Tobin's q Ratio and Industrial Organization," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(1), pages 1-32, January.
    28. Brown, William O. & Burdekin, Richard C. K., 2000. "Turning Points in the U.S. Civil War: A British Perspective," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 60(01), pages 216-231, March.
    29. Asch, Peter & Seneca, J J, 1976. "Is Collusion Profitable?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 58(1), pages 1-12, February.
    30. Block, Michael Kent & Nold, Frederick Carl, 1981. "The Deterrent Effect of Antitrust Enforcement," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(3), pages 429-45, June.
    31. Binder, John J, 1998. " The Event Study Methodology since 1969," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 11(2), pages 111-37, September.
    32. Friedman, James W, 1971. "A Non-cooperative Equilibrium for Supergames," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(113), pages 1-12, January.
    33. Frey, Bruno S. & Waldenstr M, Daniel, 2004. "Markets work in war: World War II reflected in the Zurich and Stockholm bond markets," Financial History Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 11(01), pages 51-67, April.
    34. Sproul, Michael F, 1993. "Antitrust and Prices," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(4), pages 741-54, August.
    35. Bollerslev, Tim, 1986. "Generalized autoregressive conditional heteroskedasticity," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 307-327, April.
    36. Tobin, James, 1969. "A General Equilibrium Approach to Monetary Theory," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 1(1), pages 15-29, February.
    37. Webb, Steven B., 1980. "Tariffs, Cartels, Technology, and Growth in the German Steel Industry, 1879 to 1914," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 40(02), pages 309-330, June.
    38. Parnell, Martin F., 1994. "The German Tradition of Organized Capitalism: Self-Government in the Coal Industry," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198277613, March.
    39. Kiviet, Jan F., 1995. "On bias, inconsistency, and efficiency of various estimators in dynamic panel data models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 53-78, July.
    40. repec:kap:eurfin:v:10:y:2006:i:4:p:587-612 is not listed on IDEAS
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:mpg:wpaper:2009_09. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Marc Martin)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.