Glue or Gasoline? The Role of Interorganizational Relationships in the Spillover of Price Wars
This study investigates the role of self-enforced and third party-enforced interorganizational relationships (IORs) in influencing the spillover of price wars. Unlike previous research that emphasized economic factors (e.g., demand fluctuations and firm financial health) that precipitate price wars, this study underscores the relational aspect of price wars. Specifically, we argue that although self-enforced and third party-enforced relationships among competitors may both reduce the likelihood of price wars; once a war has started, third-party- enforced relationships will reduce the likelihood that a price war will spread into additional markets, while self-enforced relationships will increase the likelihood of such spillover. Using data from the United States (US) domestic airline industry from 1992 to 2010, our empirical evidence offers strong support for our predictions. By signifying the importance of IORs in the spillover of price wars, we hope to contribute to research on interorganizational relationships, as well as research on competition.