The Wharton School
University of Pennsylvania
3620 Locust Walk
Philadelphia, PA 19104
NBER Program Affiliations:
NBER Affiliation: Research Associate
NBER Working Papers and Publications
|September 2017||How Efficient is Dynamic Competition? The Case of Price as Investment|
with David Besanko, Yaroslav Kryukov: w23829
We study industries where the price that a firm sets serves as an investment into lower cost or higher demand. We assess the welfare implications of the ensuing competition for the market using analytical and numerical approaches to compare the equilibria of a learning-by-doing model to the first-best planner solution. We show that dynamic competition leads to low deadweight loss. This cannot be attributed to similarity between the equilibria and the planner solution. Instead, we show how learning-by-doing causes the various contributions to deadweight loss to either be small or partly offset each other.
|January 2017||Ownership Concentration and Strategic Supply Reduction|
with Katja Seim, Michael Sinkinson, Peichun Wang: w23034
We explore the sensitivity of the U.S. government's ongoing incentive auction to multi-license ownership by broadcasters. We document significant broadcast TV license purchases by private equity firms prior to the auction and perform a prospective analysis of the effect of ownership concentration on auction outcomes. We find that multi-license holders are able to raise spectrum acquisition costs by 22% by strategically withholding some of their licenses to increase the price for their remaining licenses. We analyze a potential rule change that reduces the distortion in payouts to license holders by up to 80%, but find that lower participation could greatly increase payouts and exacerbate strategic effects.
|February 2016||Just Starting Out: Learning and Equilibrium in a New Market|
with Gregory Lewis, Ariel Pakes: w21996
We document the evolution of the newly created market for frequency response within the UK electricity system over a six-year period. Firms competed in price while facing considerable initial uncertainty about market demand and rival behavior. We show that over time prices stabilized, converging to a rest point that is consistent with equilibrium play, and then adjusted to subsequent changes in the market quite quickly. We draw on models of fictitious play and adaptive learning to analyze how this convergence occurs and show that these models predict behavior better than Nash equilibrium prior to convergence.
|September 2001||The Role of Permanent Income and Demographics in Black/White Differences in Wealth|
with Joseph G. Altonji: w8473
We explore the extent to which the huge race gap in wealth can be explained with properly constructed income and demographic variables. In some instances we explain the entire wealth gap with income and demographics provided that we estimate the wealth model on a sample of whites. However, we typically explain a much smaller fraction when we estimate the wealth model on a black sample. Using sibling comparisons to control for intergenerational transfers and the effects of adverse history, we find that differences in income and demographics are not likely to account for the lower explanatory power of the black wealth models. Our analysis of growth models of wealth suggests that differences in savings behavior and/or rates of return play an important role.
Published: Altonji, Joseph G. and Ulrich Doraszelski. "The Role of Permanent Income and Demographics in Black/White Differences in Wealth." Journal of Human Resources 40, 1 (Winter 2005): 1-30. citation courtesy of