This paper assesses the competition faced by oil pipelines. It also uses a new procedure and new data to test whether oil pipeline markets are competitive or monopolistic, under standard definitions. The key innovation of the paper is a new approach to the definition of the relevant market(s) in which oil pipelines operate. While recognizing that pipeline monopsony also could be a problem under certain conditions, the paper argues that these conditions are unlikely to arise and that if they do, it is unclear whether pipeline owners would be in a position to exploit them. The study offers new evidence to fuel the 80-year-old debate over pipeline rates and regulation. Copyright 1986 Western Economic Association International.
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