Lecture 8 - Price Discrimination

The Element of Economic Analysis

University of Chicago

This lecture addresses monopolistic firms' attempt to get around their basic trade-off by charging different prices to different consumer or for different units of goods. After exploring why first-degree price discrimination is desirable but unattainable, we consider how various imperfect forms of price discrimination (implicit, explicit and others) operate. We analyze when price discrimination improves and when it harms the efficient operation of markets and how price discriminatory strategies can be used in the design of public policies such as taxation, auctions and criminal justice.

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