DP2151 Monopolistic Competition, Multiproduct Firms and Optimum Product Diversity
This paper tackles the issue of optimum product diversity in an imperfectly competitive market with small or large firms. First, it develops a quadratic utility model of monopolistic competition with horizontal product differentiation which avoids some of the main pitfalls of the S-D-S approach. Second, it extends the model to the case of multiproduct firms showing how product diversity is affected with respect to monopolistic competition. In particular, it is shown that monopolistic competition with single-product firms is the limiting case of oligopolistic competition with multiproduct firms when either varieties gets more and more differentiated or when the entry cost goes further and further down.