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Vertical Relationships and Competition in Retail Gasoline Markets: Empirical Evidence from Contract Changes in Southern California: Comment

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In a paper in the March 2004 AER, Justine Hastings concludes that the acquisition of an independent gasoline retailer, Thrifty, by a vertically integrated firm, ARCO, is associated with sizable price increases at competing stations. To better understand the mechanism to which she attributes this effect – which combines vertical integration and rebranding – we attempted but ultimately failed to reproduce the results using alternative data.

Document Type: Short Communication


Publication date: 2010-06-01

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