Statistical moments analysis of production and welfare in multi-product Cournot oligopoly

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2008-03-01
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Hennessy, David
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Lapan, Harvey
University Professor Emeritus
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Economics

The Department of Economic Science was founded in 1898 to teach economic theory as a truth of industrial life, and was very much concerned with applying economics to business and industry, particularly agriculture. Between 1910 and 1967 it showed the growing influence of other social studies, such as sociology, history, and political science. Today it encompasses the majors of Agricultural Business (preparing for agricultural finance and management), Business Economics, and Economics (for advanced studies in business or economics or for careers in financing, management, insurance, etc).

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The Department of Economic Science was founded in 1898 under the Division of Industrial Science (later College of Liberal Arts and Sciences); it became co-directed by the Division of Agriculture in 1919. In 1910 it became the Department of Economics and Political Science. In 1913 it became the Department of Applied Economics and Social Science; in 1924 it became the Department of Economics, History, and Sociology; in 1931 it became the Department of Economics and Sociology. In 1967 it became the Department of Economics, and in 2007 it became co-directed by the Colleges of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Liberal Arts and Sciences, and Business.

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1898–present

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  • Department of Economic Science (1898–1910)
  • Department of Economics and Political Science (1910-1913)
  • Department of Applied Economics and Social Science (1913–1924)
  • Department of Economics, History and Sociology (1924–1931)
  • Department of Economics and Sociology (1931–1967)

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Center for Agricultural and Rural Development

The Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) conducts innovative public policy and economic research on agricultural, environmental, and food issues. CARD uniquely combines academic excellence with engagement and anticipatory thinking to inform and benefit society.

CARD researchers develop and apply economic theory, quantitative methods, and interdisciplinary approaches to create relevant knowledge. Communication efforts target state and federal policymakers; the research community; agricultural, food, and environmental groups; individual decision-makers; and international audiences.

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Our context involves N Cournot oligopolists producing M products at constant marginal costs when preferences are quasilinear. We identify relationships between second moments of unit costs and second moments of firm-level production. For example, a larger variance in unit costs of a product increases own output variance and the variance of any other output. We also investigate how second moments of unit costs affect industry cost efficiency. Industry costs can rise if the wrong firm secures a cost reduction. For quadratic preferences, it is shown that Zhao's (Zhao, J., 2001. A characterization for the negative welfare effects of cost reduction in Cournot oligopoly. International Journal of Industrial Organization 19, 455–469 (3–4, March)) share criteria for an increase in unit costs to increase welfare extend to the multi-product setting.

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This is a manuscript of an article from International Journal of Industrial Organization 26 (2008): 598, doi: 10.1016/j.ijindorg.2007.04.007. Posted with permission.

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Mon Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 2007
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