Discussion Paper Details

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Title: Competition among Middlemen When Buyers and Sellers can Trade Directly

Author(s): John Fingleton

Publication Date: December 1996

Keyword(s): Intermediation, Middleman and Monopolization

Programme Area(s): Industrial Organization

Abstract: This paper examines how the introduction of a direct trade alternative for buyers and sellers affects competition among middlemen. Direct trade makes middlemen?s supply and demand functions depend on both bid and ask prices, a feature we term interdependence. A simple model is used to illustrate this phenomenon and to show how interdependence effects depend on the efficiency of direct trade. We find that direct trade does not alter Stahl?s (1988) finding that middlemen may ?corner? the market. This occurs under different conditions and with smaller distortions if there is an active direct trade possibility for sellers and buyers, however.

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Bibliographic Reference

Fingleton, J. 1996. 'Competition among Middlemen When Buyers and Sellers can Trade Directly'. London, Centre for Economic Policy Research.