Lecture 7 Markets with market power. (Please note that there is no Part II of Lecture 6)

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1 Lecture 7 Markets with market power (Please note that there is no Part II of Lecture 6)

2 Four idealized types of market structure Perfect competition: many sellers; they are selling an identical product Pure monopoly: only one seller Monopolistic competition: many sellers, selling slightly different goods/services Oligopoly: only a few sellers; each needs to watch what the others are doing

3 Pure monopoly Conditions: There is only one seller The good has no close substitutes Barriers to entry prevent other firms from starting to produce the good Barriers to entry: economic, legal, or deliberate obstacles that keep new sellers from entering a market

4 Pure monopoly: Barriers to entry Economic barriers: related with the production technology (high fixed costs, economies of scale, network externalities. Ex: natural monopoly) Legal barriers: copy rights, franchises, patents, trademarks Deliberate barriers: physical, financial, and political intimidation of potential competitors. Many are illegal (Ex: predatory pricing, dumping, exclusionary practices)

5 Pure monopoly: Profit maximization Marginal Revenue for a Monopolist Quantity of Output Selling Price ($) Total Revenue ($) Marginal Revenue ($)

6 Pure monopoly: Profit maximization

7 Pure monopoly and inefficiency

8 Can monopoly be efficient? In some cases, the efficiency cost of monopoly may not be as bad as the previous analysis suggests: Natural monopoly: A single big firm may sometimes be socially preferable compared to many small ones. Intellectual property: Firms may need a period of exclusive, high profits in order to cover the costs of research and development When there is some pressure to appear competitive, monopolies may tend to reduce the price and increase the quantity that it produces Perfect price discrimination: A monopolist able to charge different prices to its customers based on their willingness to pay would be efficient.

9 Can monopoly be efficient? Price discrimination: A seller charging different prices to different buyers, depending on their ability and willingness to pay Perfectly price discriminating monopolist: an extreme form of price discrimination

10 Monopolistic competition Conditions: Many sellers and buyers The sellers produce slightly different products (product differentiation) Sellers can freely enter and exit Buyers have perfect information

11 Price Monopolistic competition: Profit maximization MC D 1 D 2 MR 1 MR 2 Quantity

12 Monopolistic competition: Long-run efficiency

13 Oligopoly Conditions: Only a few sellers control the market Entry is difficult Concentration ratio: The share of total production, sales, or revenues attributable to the largest firms in an industry (usually the share of the largest four firms) Examples (from year 2002): Car and light-truck manufacturing in the US: 88.1% Breakfast cereal manufacturing: 78.4% Credit card issuing financial firms: 75.8%

14 Oligopoly: Behavior of firms The behavior of oligopolistic firms is interdependent; marginal thinking that we used so far not applicable anymore Therefore, game theory needed to analyze the behavior of oligopolistic firms (due to strategic interaction between firms)

15 Firm 1 s Options Oligopoly: An example with a Duopoly Firm 2 s Options Low Price High Price Low Price low profit low profit high profit loss High Price loss high profit moderate profit moderate profit Assume that the firms are non-cooperative: They are rivals and do not communicate or cooperate with each other This payoff matrix shows possible outcomes for each of the two players, depending on the strategy each one chooses

16 Oligopoly: Collusion, cartels, etc. Collusion: Cooperation among potential rivals to gain market power as a group Cartel: explicit collusion (Example: OPEC) Tacit collusion: collusion that takes place without creation of a cartel (without a formal organization) Price leadership: a form of collusion in which many sellers follow the price changes instituted by one particular seller

17 Oligopoly: Efficiency? Inefficient like pure monopoly Maybe even worse sometimes: Because no possibility of reaping advantages of economies of scale

18 Summary: 4 types of idealized market Summary of Traditional Market Structures Number of Sellers in the Market Type of Item(s) Sold Market Power of an Individual Seller Perfect Competition structures Pure Monopoly Monopolistic Competition Oligopoly many one many few identical unique differentiated varies none very high some substantial Entry Barriers none very high none some Long-Run Economic Profit Profit- Maximizing Condition zero positive zero varies MC = P MC = MR MC = MR varies

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