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Abstract

In this paper, detailed data on transactions in a village commodity market are used to explain the puzzle of sluggish agricultural supply response. We show that existence of reciprocity among sellers exhibits multiple equilibria and creates trade diversion. Large volumes of the commodity are sold to a trader who does not offer the best price, but on whom sellers depend through transactions in other markets. An implication of this trader-idiosyncratic effect on supply is that policies that affect prices may result in different supply responses.

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