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Search Frictions And Market Power In Negotiated Price Markets

Author

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  • Jason Allen

    (Bank of Canada)

  • Robert Clark

    (Queen's University)

  • Jean-Francois Houde

    (Cornell University and NBER)

Abstract

We provide a framework for empirical analysis of negotiated-price markets. Using mortgage market data and a search and negotiation model, we characterize the welfare impact of search frictions and quantify the role of search costs and brand loyalty for market power. Search frictions reduce consumer surplus by $12/month/consumer, 28% of which can be associated with discrimination, 22% with ineifficient matching, and 50% with search costs. Large consumer-base banks have margins 70% higher than those with small consumer bases. The main source of this incumbency advantage is brand loyalty; however, price discrimination based on search frictions accounts for almost a third.

Suggested Citation

  • Jason Allen & Robert Clark & Jean-Francois Houde, 2018. "Search Frictions And Market Power In Negotiated Price Markets," Working Paper 1403, Economics Department, Queen's University.
  • Handle: RePEc:qed:wpaper:1403
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Martgage markets; Search costs; Brand loyalty; Bargaining;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • L41 - Industrial Organization - - Antitrust Issues and Policies - - - Monopolization; Horizontal Anticompetitive Practices
    • L71 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Primary Products and Construction - - - Mining, Extraction, and Refining: Hydrocarbon Fuels
    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages

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