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Taste for variety and endogenous fluctuations in a monopolistic competition model

In past years, imperfect competition has been introduced in several dynamic models to show how mark-up variability, increasing returns (decreasing marginal cost) and monopoly profits affect the occurence of endogenous fluctuations. In this paper, we focus on another possible feature of imperfectly competitive economies : consumers' taste for variety due to endogenous product diversity. Introducing monopolistic competition (Dixit and Stiglitz (1977), Benassy (1996)) in an overlapping generations model where consumers have taste for variety, we show that local indeterminacy can occur under the three following conditions : a high substitution between capital and labor, increasing returns arbitrarily small and a not too elastic labor supply. The key mechanism for this result is based on the fact that, due to taste for variety, the aggregate price decreases with the pro-cyclical product diversity which has a direct influence on the real wage and the real interest rate.

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Paper provided by Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne in its series Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne with number v07004.

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Length: 22 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mse:cesdoc:v07004
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  1. Rodolphe Dos Santos Ferreira & Teresa Lloyd-Braga, 2002. "Can market power sustain endogenous growth in overlapping-generations economies?," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 20(1), pages 199-205.
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  3. Pencavel, John, 1987. "Labor supply of men: A survey," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & R. Layard (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 1, pages 3-102 Elsevier.
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  6. Cazzavillan, Guido & Lloyd-Braga, Teresa & Pintus, Patrick, 1996. "Multiple steady states and endogenous fluctuations with increasing returns to scale in production," CEPREMAP Working Papers (Couverture Orange) 9618, CEPREMAP.
  7. Richard Blundell & Thomas MaCurdy, 1998. "Labour supply: a review of alternative approaches," IFS Working Papers W98/18, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  8. Benhabib, Jess & Farmer, Roger E.A., 1991. "Indeterminacy and Increasing Returns," Working Papers 91-59, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  9. Ball, Laurence & Romer, David, 1991. "Sticky Prices as Coordination Failure," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(3), pages 539-52, June.
  10. Nobuhiro Kiyotaki, 1988. "Multiple Expectational Equilibria Under Monopolistic Competition," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 103(4), pages 695-713.
  11. Thomas Seegmuller, 2009. "Capital-Labour Substitution And Endogenous Fluctuations: A Monopolistic Competition Approach With Variable Markup," The Japanese Economic Review, Japanese Economic Association, vol. 60(3), pages 301-319.
  12. Benassy, Jean-Pascal, 1996. "Taste for variety and optimum production patterns in monopolistic competition," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 41-47, July.
  13. Burnside, Craig, 1996. "Production function regressions, returns to scale, and externalities," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(2-3), pages 177-201, April.
  14. Killingsworth, Mark R. & Heckman, James J., 1987. "Female labor supply: A survey," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & R. Layard (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 2, pages 103-204 Elsevier.
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  16. Gali, J., 1991. "Monopolistic Competition, Business Cycles and the Composition of Aggregate Demand," Papers 92-03, Columbia - Graduate School of Business.
  17. Basu, Susanto & Fernald, John G, 1997. "Returns to Scale in U.S. Production: Estimates and Implications," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(2), pages 249-83, April.
  18. Thomas Seegmuller, 2005. "On the Stabilizing Virtues of Imperfect Competition," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00194173, HAL.
  19. Weder, Mark, 1997. "Animal spirits, technology shocks and the business cycle," SFB 373 Discussion Papers 1997,61, Humboldt University of Berlin, Interdisciplinary Research Project 373: Quantification and Simulation of Economic Processes.
  20. Grandmont, Jean-Michel & Pintus, Patrick & de Vilder, Robin, 1998. "Capital-Labor Substitution and Competitive Nonlinear Endogenous Business Cycles," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 14-59, May.
  21. Rivard Brian A., 1994. "Monopolistic Competition, Increasing Returns, and Self-Fulfilling Prophecies," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 346-362, April.
  22. Lloyd-Braga, Teresa & Nourry, Carine & Venditti, Alain, 2005. "Indeterminacy in Dynamic Models: When Diamond Meets Ramsey," CEPR Discussion Papers 5255, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  23. Jorgen Jacobsen, Hans, 2000. "Endogenous, imperfectly competitive business cycles," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 305-336, February.
  24. Cazzavillan, Guido, 2001. "Indeterminacy and Endogenous Fluctuations with Arbitrarily Small Externalities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 101(1), pages 133-157, November.
  25. Duffy, John & Papageorgiou, Chris, 2000. "A Cross-Country Empirical Investigation of the Aggregate Production Function Specification," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 5(1), pages 87-120, March.
  26. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1975. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 64, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
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