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Advertising bans

  • Massimo Motta

I show that an advertising ban is more likely to increase -- rather than decrease -- total consumption when advertising does not bring about a large expansion of market demand at given prices and when it increases product differentiation (thus allowing firms to command higher prices). In this case, the main impact of a ban on advertising is to reduce equilibrium prices and thus increase demand. I argue that this is more likely to happen in mature industries where consumer goods are ex--ante (i.e. without advertising) similar and advertising is of the `persuasive' type. The ban is the more likely to increase profits of the firms the weaker the ability of advertising to expand total demand and the less advertising serves to induce product differentiation.

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File URL: http://www.econ.upf.edu/docs/papers/downloads/205.pdf
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Paper provided by Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in its series Economics Working Papers with number 205.

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Date of creation: Oct 1996
Date of revision: Jan 1997
Handle: RePEc:upf:upfgen:205
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.econ.upf.edu/

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  1. Kwoka, John E, Jr, 1984. "Advertising and the Price and Quality of Optometric Services," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(1), pages 211-16, March.
  2. Grossman, Gene M & Shapiro, Carl, 1984. "Informative Advertising with Differentiated Products," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(1), pages 63-81, January.
  3. Becker, Gary S & Murphy, Kevin M, 1993. "A Simple Theory of Advertising as a Good or Bad," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 108(4), pages 941-64, November.
  4. Cabrales, Antonio & Motta, Massimo, 1996. "Country Asymmetries, Endogenous Product Choice and the Speed of Trade Liberalization," CEPR Discussion Papers 1326, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Baltagi, Badi H & Levin, Dan, 1986. "Estimating Dynamic Demand for Cigarettes Using Panel Data: The Effects of Bootlegging, Taxation and Advertising Reconsidered," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 68(1), pages 148-55, February.
  6. Johnston, Jack, 1980. "Advertising and the aggregate demand for cigarettes : A comment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 117-125.
  7. Hamilton, James L, 1972. "The Demand for Cigarettes: Advertising, the Health Scare, and the Cigarette Advertising Ban," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 54(4), pages 401-11, November.
  8. Rosenkranz, Stephanie, 1996. "Simultaneous Choice of Process and Product Innovation," CEPR Discussion Papers 1321, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. McGuinness, Tony & Cowling, Keith, 1975. "Advertising and the aggregate demand for cigarettes," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 6(3), pages 311-328, July.
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