Economics at your fingertips  

Market Transparency: A Mixed Blessing?

Peter Møllgaard () and Per Overgaard ()

No 1999-15, CIE Discussion Papers from University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics. Centre for Industrial Economics

Abstract: Antitrust practitioners and consumers protectionists often argue that market transparency should be improved to allow consumers to shop around for bargain prices thereby putting pressure on oligopolists´ pricing. We model how transparency, interpreted as the comparability from the point of view of consumers of the characteristics of goods and services, affects the outcome of a repeated oligopoly. Improved transparency may make consumers switch suppliers more easily. This increases the static temptation of individual firms to deviate from tacitly agreed prices, but at the same time the future punishment may become more severe. When the number of firms is small, the "optimal degree of transparency" may not be perfect transparency, unless the oligopolists may rely on sophisticated, optimal punishment strategies. When the number of firms grows larger, the optimal degree of transparency increases, and from some point onward perfect transparency is optimal. We discuss the various policy implications of these results.

Keywords: market transparency; customer switching; repeated oligopoly (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D18 D43 L13 L41 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 32 pages
Date: 1999-07, Revised 2000-02
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (18) Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link) (application/pdf)
Our link check indicates that this URL is bad, the error code is: 404 Not Found ( [301 Moved Permanently]-->

Related works:
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link:

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in CIE Discussion Papers from University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics. Centre for Industrial Economics �ster Farimagsgade 5, Building 26, DK-1353 Copenhagen K., Denmark. Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Thomas Hoffmann ().

Page updated 2023-03-26
Handle: RePEc:kud:kuieci:1999-15