Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance,
Stockholm School of Economics

No 471: Endogenous Market Segmentation and the Law of One Price

Richard Friberg () and Kaj Martensen
Additional contact information
Richard Friberg: Dept. of Economic Statistics, Stockholm School of Economics, Postal: Stockholm School of Economics, P.O. Box 6501, S-113 83 Stockholm, Sweden
Kaj Martensen: Dept. of Economic Statistics, Stockholm School of Economics, Postal: Stockholm School of Economics, P.O. Box 6501, S-113 83 Stockholm, Sweden

Abstract: To the surprise of many, price deviations between markets characterized by imperfect competition have often been little affected by lower transport costs. In a Cournot model we show that if firms' decisions to segment markets are endogenous, then lower transport costs are, in many cases, associated with greater price differentials between markets. The intuition is that lower transport costs, by facilitating arbitrage, place a tighter restriction on the maximization problem and a firm is willing to take a greater cost in order to segment. We examine how the resulting equilibria depend on transport costs, product differentiation and costs of segmenting.

Keywords: price discrimination; market integration; law of one price.

JEL-codes: D43; F15; L13

28 pages, October 30, 2001

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