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Continuous Spatial Monopolistic Competition: Matching Goods With Consumers

Sergey Kokovin, Maxim Goryunov and Takatoshi Tabuchi

HSE Working papers from National Research University Higher School of Economics

Abstract: Our new approach enriches the general additive monopolistic competition model (AMCM) - with a space of product characteristics: consumers' "ideal varieties". Unlike Hotelling, such partially localized competition involves intersecting zones of service among (continuously distributed) producers. Then, the uniform equilibrium firms' density increases with growing population, as with the usual AMCM. However, now increasing/decreasing prices are determined by the increasing/decreasing elasticity of elementary utility (instead of demand elasticity in AMCM). A new characteristic - the firm's range of service - decreases. Such finer matching between buyers and sellers becomes a new source of welfare gain from a thicker market, unlike the variety benefit in AMCM. The free-entry competition remains socially excessive under some natural preferences.

Keywords: monopolistic competition; spatial competition; optimal product diversity; gains from trade; finer matching. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: L11 L13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 38 pages
Date: 2017
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-bec, nep-com, nep-mkt and nep-upt
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (1) Track citations by RSS feed

Published in WP BRP Series: Economics / EC, August 2017, pages 1-38

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