Middlemen versus Market Makers: A Theory of Competitive Exchange
We present a model in which the microstructure of trade in a commodity or asset is endogenously determined. Producers and consumers of a commodity (or buyers and sellers of an asset) who wish to trade can choose between two competing types of intermediaries: 'middlemen' (dealer/brokers) and 'market makers' (specialists). Market makers post publicly observable bid and ask prices, whereas the prices quoted by different middlemen are private information that can only be obtained through a costly search process. We consider an initial equilibrium where there are no market makers but there is free entry of middlemen with heterogeneous transactions costs. We characterize conditions under which entry of a single market maker can be profitable even though it is common knowledge that all surviving middlemen will undercut the market maker's publicly posted bid and ask prices in the post-entry equilibrium. The market maker's entry induces the surviving middlemen to reduce their bid-ask spreads, and as a result, all producers and consumers who choose to participate in the market enjoy a strict increase in their expected gains from trade. We show that strict Pareto improvements occur even in cases where the market maker's entry drives all middlemen out of business, monopolizing the intermediation of trade in the market.
|Date of creation:||Apr 2002|
|Publication status:||published as Rust, John and George Hall. "Middlemen Versus Market Makers: A Theory Of Competitive Exchange," Journal of Political Economy, 2003, v111(2,Apr), 353-403.|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.|
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
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.:
- Michael J. Fleming, 2003.
"Measuring treasury market liquidity,"
Economic Policy Review,
Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Sep, pages 83-108.
- Michael J. Fleming, 2001. "Measuring treasury market liquidity," Staff Reports 133, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
- Daniel F. Spulber, 1996. "Market Microstructure and Intermediation," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 10(3), pages 135-152, Summer.
- Gehrig, Thomas, 1993. "Intermediation in Search Markets," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(1), pages 97-120, Spring.
- Thomas Gehrig, 1993. "Intermediation in Search Markets," Discussion Papers 1058, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
- O'Hara, Maureen & Oldfield, George S., 1986. "The Microeconomics of Market Making," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 21(04), pages 361-376, December.
- George Hall and John Rust, Yale University, 2001. "Econometric Methods for Endogenously Sampled Time Series: The Case of Commodity Price Speculation in the Steel Market," Computing in Economics and Finance 2001 274, Society for Computational Economics.
- George Hall & John Rust, 2002. "Econometric Methods for Endogenously Sampled Time Series: The Case of Commodity Price Speculation in the Steel Market," NBER Technical Working Papers 0278, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- George Hall & John Rust, 2002. "Econometric Methods for Endogenously Sampled Time Series: The Case of Commodity Price Speculation in the Steel Market," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1376, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
- Yannis Bakos, 2001. "The Emerging Landscape for Retail E-Commerce," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(1), pages 69-80, Winter.
- David Lucking-Reiley & Daniel F. Spulber, 2001. "Business-to-Business Electronic Commerce," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(1), pages 55-68, Winter.
- David Lucking-Reiley & Daniel F. Spulber, 2000. "Business-to-Business Electronic Commerce," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 0016, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
- Yanelle, Marie-Odile, 1989. "The strategic analysis of intermediation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 33(2-3), pages 294-301, March.
- George Hall & John Rust, 2007. "The (S,s) Policy is an Optimal Trading Strategy in a Class of Commodity Price Speculation Problems," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 30(3), pages 515-538, March.
- Easley, David & Kiefer, Nicholas M & O'Hara, Maureen, 1996. " Cream-Skimming or Profit-Sharing? The Curious Role of Purchased Order Flow," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 51(3), pages 811-833, July.
- Daniel F. Spulber, 1996. "Market Making by Price-Setting Firms," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 63(4), pages 559-580.
- Hall, George & Rust, John, 2000. "An empirical model of inventory investment by durable commodity intermediaries," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 171-214, June.
- George J. Hall & John Rust, 1999. "An Empirical Model of Inventory Investment by Durable Commodity Intermediaries," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1228, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
- George Hall & John Rust, 1999. "An Empirical Model of Inventory Investment by Durable Commodity Intermediaries," Macroeconomics 9904005, EconWPA.
- Yavas, Abdullah, 1992. "Marketmakers versus matchmakers," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 2(1), pages 33-58, March.
- Battalio, Robert & Greene, Jason & Jennings, Robert, 1997. "Do Competing Specialists and Preferencing Dealers Affect Market Quality?," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 10(4), pages 969-993.
- Michael R. Baye & John Morgan, 2001. "Information Gatekeepers on the Internet and the Competitiveness of Homogeneous Product Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 454-474, June.
- Caillaud, Bernard & Jullien, Bruno, 2001. "Chicken and Egg: Competing Matchmakers," CEPR Discussion Papers 2885, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers. Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:8883. 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: ()
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.