NBER Reporter: Spring 2000

Franco-American Seminar on Economics

The NBER and The Centre for Economic Policy Research
The following papers are available in PDF format.

The 12th NBER Franco-American Seminar on Economics was held in Toulouse, France, on October 21-23, 1999. It took place in conjunction with the 1st CEPR (Centre for Economic Policy Research) Workshop on Applied Industrial Organization. The conference on "The Econometrics of Price and Product Competition" was organized by Marc Ivaldi at the Institut D'Economie Industrielle, Université des Sciences Sociales de Toulouse (IDEI and EHESS, Toulouse); Ariel Pakes, NBER and Harvard University; and Lars-Hendrik Röller, CEPR and WZB, Berlin.

This joint conference was aimed at presenting the state of the art in applied industrial organization and at analyzing the issues of price and product competition through a structural approach. Eighteen papers were presented in six sessions. As can be seen from the program (below), the different contributions covered a large spectrum of questions, interests, and industries including, for instance, quality, location, entry, auctions, discrimination, and industry structure in the context of many different industries or products: cable TV, automobiles, books, motels, gasoline, supermarkets, fast foods, drugs, highway construction, and loans.The papers presented indicate that the econometrics of price and product competition provides operational tools, in particular for competition policy.

The program was:

Imperfect Competition

Chair: Ariel Pakes
Michael J. Mazzeo, Northwestern University, "Competitive Outcomes in Product-Differentiated Oligopoly"
Discussant: Steven T. Berry, NBER and Yale University
Margaret E. Slade and Joris Pinkse, University of British Columbia, and Craig Brett, University of Essex, "Spatial Price Competition: A Semiparametric Approach"
Discussant: Otto Toivanen, Helsinki School of Economics

Product Differentiation

Chair: Pedro Pita Barros, Universidade Nova de Lisboa
Amil Petrin, University of Chicago, "Quantifying the Benefits of New Products: the Case of the Minivan"
Discussant: Joan-Ramon Borrell, Universitat de Barcelona
Sofronis K.Clerides, University of Cyprus, "Product Selection as Price Discrimination in the Market for Books"
Discussant: Jordi Jaumandreu, Fundacion Empresa Publica, Madrid
Howard Smith, University of Oxford, "Supermarket Choice and Supermarket Competition in Market Equilibrium"
Discussant: Pedro L. Marin, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid

Entry and Sunk Costs

Chair: Lars-Hendrik Roller
Michael Waterson, University of Warwick, and Otto Toivanen, "Market Structure and Entry: Where's the Beef?"
Discussant: Frank Verboven, University of Antwerp, Tilburg University, and CEPR
Sara Fisher-Ellison, MIT, and Glenn Ellison, NBER and MIT, "Strategic Entry Deterrence and the Behavior of Pharmaceutical Incumbents Prior to Patent Expiration"
Discussant: Marcus Asplund, Stockholm School of Economics

Applications of Auction Models

Chair: Jean Tirole, IDEI and CERAS, Paris
Luke M. Froeb, Steven Tschantz, and Philip Crooke, Vanderbilt University, "Second-price Auctions with Power Related Distributions: Predicting Merger Effects"
Discussant: Gautam Gowrisankaran, University of Minnesota
Martin Pesendorfer, NBER and Yale University, and Mireaia Jofre-Bonet, Yale University, "Bidding Behavior in a Repeated Procurement Auction"
Discussant: Frode Steen, Norwegian School of Economics
Harry J. Paarsch, University of Iowa, Stephen G. Donald, Boston University, and Jacques Robert, University of Montreal, "Identification, Estimation, and Testing in Empirical Models of Sequential, Ascending-Price Auctions with Multi-Unit Demand: An Application to Siberian Timber-Export Permits"
Discussant: Pascal Lavergne, INRA, Toulouse

Price Discrimination

Chair: Anne Perrot, University-Paris1 and CREST-INSEE
Gregory S. Crawford, Duke University, and M. Coppejans, "Bundling in Cable Television: Incentives and Implications for Regulatory Policy")
Discussant: Phillip Leslie, University of California, Los Angeles
Robert J. Gary-Bobo and Sophie Larribeau, University of Cergy-Pontoise, "A Structural Model of Discrimination in Mortgage Lending, with some Evidence on Neutral Ground"
Discussant: Moshe Kim, University of Haifa

Differentiation and Public Policy

Chair: Jacques Mairesse, NBER and CREST-INSEE, Paris
Neil Gandal and Chaim Fershtman, Tel Aviv University, and Sarit Markovich, University of Chicago, "Estimating the Effect of Tax Reform in Differentiated Product Oligopolistic Markets"
Discussant: Jérôme Foncel, University of Lille
George Symeondis, University of Essex and CEPR, "Are Cartel Laws Bad for Business? Evidence from the UK"
Discussant: Ralph Siebert, WZB, Berlin
Jeffrey R. Campbell, NBER and University of Chicago, and Hugo A. Hopenhayn, University of Rochester, "Market Size Matters"
Discussant: James Levinsohn, University of Michigan

These papers can be found here.

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