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Stochastic Market Sharing, Partial Communication and Collusion

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  • Heiko Gerlach

    (University OF AUCKLAND)

Abstract

This paper analyzes the role of communication between firms in an infinitely repeated Bertrand game in which firms receive an imperfect private signal of a common value i.i.d. demand shock. It is shown that firms can use stochastic, inter-temporal market sharing as a perfect substitute for communication in low demand states. Therefore, partial communication in high demand states is sufficient to achieve the most collusive, full communication outcome. And partial communication in low demand state does not improve on the equilibrium without communication. Communication in high demand states allows firms to coordinate their pricing, choose the most efficient uninformed price and avoid price wars. I demonstrate that under some conditions consumers are better off with communication among colluding firms.

Suggested Citation

  • Heiko Gerlach, 2005. "Stochastic Market Sharing, Partial Communication and Collusion," Industrial Organization 0501009, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 23 Mar 2006.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpio:0501009
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Sahuguet, Nicolas & Walckiers, Alexis, 2017. "A theory of hub-and-spoke collusion," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 353-370.
    2. Noam Shamir, 2017. "Cartel Formation Through Strategic Information Leakage in a Distribution Channel," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 36(1), pages 70-88, January.
    3. Sahuguet, Nicolas & Walckiers, Alexis, 2013. "Selling to a cartel of retailers: a model of hub-and-spoke collusion," CEPR Discussion Papers 9385, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Escobar, Juan F. & Llanes, Gastón, 2018. "Cooperation dynamics in repeated games of adverse selection," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 176(C), pages 408-443.
    5. Harrington, Joseph E., 2017. "A theory of collusion with partial mutual understanding," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(1), pages 140-158.
    6. Harrington, Joseph E. & Zhao, Wei, 2012. "Signaling and tacit collusion in an infinitely repeated Prisoners’ Dilemma," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 64(3), pages 277-289.
    7. Joseph E. Harrington, Jr. & Wei Zhao, 2012. "Signaling and Tacit Collusion in an Infinitely Repeated Prisoners' Dilemma," Economics Working Paper Archive 587, The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics.
    8. Joseph E. Harrington, Jr., 2012. "A Theory of Tacit Collusion," Economics Working Paper Archive 588, The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics.
    9. Gerlach, Heiko, 2009. "Stochastic market sharing, partial communication and collusion," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(6), pages 655-666, November.
    10. Ramakanta Patra & Tadashi Sekiguchi, 2021. "Full Collusion with Entry and Incomplete Information," KIER Working Papers 1055, Kyoto University, Institute of Economic Research.
    11. Jeanine Miklós-Thal & Catherine Tucker, 2019. "Collusion by Algorithm: Does Better Demand Prediction Facilitate Coordination Between Sellers?," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 65(4), pages 1552-1561, April.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Stochastic Market Sharing; Communication; Collusion; Competition Policy;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • L41 - Industrial Organization - - Antitrust Issues and Policies - - - Monopolization; Horizontal Anticompetitive Practices
    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • D - Microeconomics

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