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A Nonparametric Test of Strategic Behavior in the Cournot Model

  • Deb, Rahul
  • Fenske, James

We devise a nonparametric test of strategic behavior in a multiproduct Cournot oligopoly. It is assumed that firms have cost functions that do not change over the period of observation but that market demand can change in each period. Market prices and firm-specific production quantities are observed and it is assumed that neither the inverse demand functions nor the cost functions are known. The driving assumptions of the test are that market inverse demand functions are decreasing and differentiable at each period and that cost functions are increasing and convex for each firm. Under these very general conditions, we show that this test imposes strong restrictions on observed data. We apply the test to the crude oil market and find that strategic behavior is strongly rejected.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 16560.

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Date of creation: 01 Aug 2009
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:16560
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  1. Gault, John & Spierer, Charles & Bertholet, Jean-Luc & Karbassioun, Bahman, 1999. "How does OPEC allocate quotas?," Journal of Energy Finance & Development, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 137-148.
  2. S. Gurcan Gulen, 1996. "Is OPEC a Cartel? Evidence from Cointegration and Causality Tests," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 2), pages 43-57.
  3. Deb, Rahul, 2009. "A testable model of consumption with externalities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(4), pages 1804-1816, July.
  4. Chavas, Jean-Paul & Cox, Thomas L, 1993. "On Generalized Revealed Preference Analysis," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 108(2), pages 493-506, May.
  5. Spilimbergo, Antonio, 2001. "Testing the hypothesis of collusive behavior among OPEC members," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 339-353, May.
  6. Ramcharran, Harri, 2002. "Oil production responses to price changes: an empirical application of the competitive model to OPEC and non-OPEC countries," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 97-106, March.
  7. Francoise Forges & Enrico Minelli, 2006. "Afriat's Theorem for General Budget Sets," Working Papers ubs0609, University of Brescia, Department of Economics.
  8. James Brander & Jonathan Eaton, 1982. "Product Line Rivalry," Working Papers 519, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  9. Griffin, James M, 1985. "OPEC Behavior: A Test of Alternative Hypotheses," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(5), pages 954-63, December.
  10. Varian, Hal R, 1982. "The Nonparametric Approach to Demand Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(4), pages 945-73, July.
  11. Carol Dahl & Mine Yucel, 1991. "Testing Alternative Hypotheses of Oil Producer Behavior," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 4), pages 117-138.
  12. Monderer, Dov & Shapley, Lloyd S., 1996. "Potential Games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 124-143, May.
  13. Pedro A. Almoguera & Christopher C. Douglas & Ana María Herrera, 2011. "Testing for the cartel in OPEC: non-cooperative collusion or just non-cooperative?," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 27(1), pages 144-168, Spring.
  14. Varian, Hal R, 1984. "The Nonparametric Approach to Production Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 579-97, May.
  15. Clifton T. Jones, 1990. "OPEC Behaviour Under Falling Prices: Implications For Cartel Stability," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 3), pages 117-130.
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