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Industrial and Corporate Change

Year: 2009  |  Volume: 18  |  Issue: 3  |  Page No.: 381 - 414

Measurement of the market power of firms: the Japanese case in the 1990s

K Kiyota, T Nakajima and K. G. Nishimura


This article presents a new simple econometric framework for the estimation of individual firms’ markup over their marginal cost, taking account of firm heterogeneity, demand-driven cyclical price changes, and the limited availability of firm-level information. The framework is applied to study markup of Japanese firms in manufacturing and wholesale/retail trade for 1994–2002. The results indicate that, on average, the Japanese markets become more competitive in the 1990s than before even in non-manufacturing industries. We also find sizable heterogeneity and non-negligible pro-cyclicality in the markup of the Japanese firms.

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