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Market Power and Innovation in the Intangible Economy


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De Ridder, M. 


This paper offers a unified explanation for the slowdown of productivity growth, the decline in business dynamism and the rise of market power. Using a quantitative framework, I show that the rise of intangible inputs – such as software – can explain these trends. Intangibles reduce marginal costs and raise fixed costs, which gives firms with high-intangible adoption a competitive advantage, in turn deterring other firms from entering. I structurally estimate the model on French and U.S. micro data. After initially boosting productivity, the rise of intangibles causes a significant decline in productivity growth, consistent with the empirical trends observed since the mid-1990s.



Productivity, Growth, Business Dynamism, Intangible Inputs, Market Power

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Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge

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