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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Experimental Markets and Chamberlin's Excess Trading Conjecture

  • Author(s): Bergstrom, Ted
  • et al.

Edward Chamberlin conjectured that the number of trades in realistic trading systems is likely to exceed that predicted by competitive equilibrium theory. He supported this conjecture by data from a large number of classroom experiments and with a plausible argument based on a numerical example. This paper states and proves a theorem that supports and illuminates Chamberlin's intuition, supplies examples of trading processes that lead to excess trading, and presents some additional experimental evidence.

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