Oligopoly has various economic effects derived from its different models.
Some of the oligopoly effects are discussed as follows:
i. Restriction on output:
Implies that oligopoly results in small output and high prices as compared to other market structures, such as perfect competition.
ii. Price exceeds average costs:
Implies that under oligopoly, there are restrictions on entry of new organizations. Thus, organizations charge prices more than the average costs. Therefore, consumers have to pay more in case of oligopoly market.
iii. Lower Efficiency:
Leads to non-optimum levels of output. This is because the output produced under oligopoly depends on the market share held by the organization. Thus, the oligopoly organizations fail to build the optimum scales of economies and achieve optimum output.
iv. Selling Costs:
Refer to high promotional costs. The oligopolists engage in high promotion tasks to take the share of its rivals. Thus, the resources are wasted in form of high selling costs which do not add to the satisfaction of customers.
Apart from aforementioned points, oligopoly shows the poor performance from various other angles. From the point of economic welfare, it fails to satisfy customers since the price charged is very high, even more than average costs. In addition, sometimes oligopolists may face wasteful fluctuations in output as the output is not determined optimally.
In perfect competition, when demand decreases, price falls. However, in case of oligopoly, price remains fixed and output only changes. This is not beneficial for customers and society as a whole. Therefore, under oligopolistic market situations, the interference of government is necessary for regulating prices and keeping a tab on collusions, so that prices can be stabilized.