Franklin M. Fisher

Franklin M. Fisher is Jane Berkowitz Carlton and Dennis William Carlton Professor of Microeconomics, Emeritus, at MIT. He was the lead expert economist for the defense, assisted by John J. McGowan and Joen E. Greenwood of Charles River Associates, in the major antitrust case U.S. v. IBM. His collected essays have been published in Econometrics: Essays in Theory and Applications and in Industrial Organization, Economics and the Law.

  • Aggregation


    Aggregate Production Functions and Related Topics: Collected Papers of Franklin M. Fisher

    Franklin M. Fisher and John Monz

    Aggregation lies at the heart of macroeconomics. Economists using such aggregates as capital, investment, labor, and even output or GNP assume that such constructions have a sound analytic foundation. The question of the existence of aggregate production functions is not only part of the foundation of macroeconomic theory and policy but also played a central role in the "Cambridge vs. Cambridge" debate, which challenged long-held assumptions about the foundations of neoclassical microeconomics. In this third collection of his essays Franklin M. Fisher settles the question of the conditions for the existence of aggregate production functions. He examines the conditions for approximate aggregation and, through simulation experiments, considers why aggregate production functions appear to work in practice. He also explores related topics involving price aggregation and aggregation in international trade.

    • Hardcover
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  • Econometrics


    Essays in Theory and Applications: Collected Papers of Franklin M. Fisher

    Franklin M. Fisher and John Monz

    The first volume of Franklin M. Fisher's collected essays, Industrial Organization, Economics, and the Law, focused on the application of economic analysis to legal disputes in the areas of regulation and antitrust. This second volume brings together Fisher's work in econometric theory and practice, including studies on the underlying structure of econometric models that were fundamental to the subject. Fisher's early discovery of block-recursive systems, together with his results on continuity for small specification errors, provided a foundation for all structural estimation. His later work on causation dealt with the implications of regarding simultaneous equation models as limiting cases of nonsimultaneous models.

    The essays in this book enlarge on those themes in various ways. Part one begins with essays that introduce the basic concepts of block-recursive systems and the foundational material for structural estimation in econometrics. They focus on simultaneous equations and the problem of exogenous variables, raising questions about the nature of econometric models and attempting to answer them through the analysis of block recursive models. Part two uses the results from Part one to examine issues of specification error and includes Fisher's classic exposition of Chow tests. Part three contains empirical I work, including studies of the copper industry, wheat supply in the nineteenth century, the famous Fisher-Griliches-Kaysen examination of the costs of automobile model changes, and the effect of the removal of firemen on railroad accidents.

    • Hardcover
    • Paperback $50.00
  • Industrial Organization, Economics, and the Law

    Industrial Organization, Economics, and the Law

    Collected Papers of Franklin M. Fisher

    Franklin M. Fisher and John Monz

    This collection of work by economist, consultant, and expert witness Franklin M. Fisher constitutes an integrated body of the economic analysis of the law, with particular emphasis on antitrust issues. Fisher's involvement with applying economic analysis to real disputes and to problems of microeconomic policy has resulted in valuable lessons. These lessons are incorporated in themes running through many of these essays about the uses and abuses, achievements and shortcomings, of economic analysis. The book opens with a broad overview of key issues in antitrust law. Fisher stresses the importance of understanding the analytic tools used to examine monopoly and competition. He shows that the notion that simple indicators such as market share, or especially, profit rates can be used to provide an easy test for market power is badly mistaken. And he goes on to discuss oligopoly and its modern game theoretic treatment, which he sees as missing the questions that matter in real situations. Throughout, specific cases and policy issues are used to illustrate these important points. The second part of the book looks at the regulation of television, particularly cable, an area in which Fisher has been active since cable television's early days. The book concludes with a section on economic analysis and the law with essays on such matters as the uses of statistical methods and punishment as a deterrent to crime.

    • Hardcover $49.50
    • Paperback $55.00
  • Antitrust and Regulation

    Essays in Memory of John J. McGowan

    Franklin M. Fisher

    This collection of original essays by economists and lawyers addresses important aspects of antitrust and regulation, such as the U.S. government's merger guidelines, antitrust in regulated industries, the connection between profitability and market share, and the question of what constitutes anticompetitive behavior. The book combines economic and legal analysis to inform policymaking with theory as well as the lessons of experience in the petroleum, electric power, computer, retail food, and telecommunications industries.

    Antitrust and Regulation opens with John McGowan's previously unpublished background paper, "Mergers for Power or Progress," for the merger guidelines taskforce which recommended the rules adopted by the Antitrust Division of the Justice Department in 1982. This is followed by "Competition and Antitrust in the Petroleum Industry: An Application of the Merger Guidelines," by George A. Hay and Robert J. Reynolds; "Anticompetitive Mergers: Prevention and Cure," by William J. Kolasky, Jr., Philip A. Proger, and Roy T Englert, Jr.; "Industrial Markets: Another Look at the SIC Approach," by James W McKie; "Profitability and Market Share," by Morris A. Adelman and Bruce E. Stangle; "Non-Price Anticompetitive Behavior by Dominant Firms Toward the Producers of Complementary Products," by J. A. Ordover, A. O. Sykes, and R. D. Willig; "Market Conduct: When is it Anticompetitive?" by Robin C. Landis and Ronald S. Rolfe; "Can Exclusive Franchises Be Bad?" by F. M. Fisher; "Mixing Regulatory and Antitrust Policies in the Electric Power Industry: The Price Squeeze and Retail Market Competition," by Paul L. Joskow; "Preferences of Policy Makers for Alternative Allocations of the Broadcast Spectrum," by Forrest Nelson and Roger Noll; "The Financial Interest and Syndication Rules in Network Television: Regulatory Fantasy and Reality," by F. M. Fisher; and "Borrowing from Peter to Pay Paul: More on Departures of Price from Marginal Cost," by Almarin Phillips and Gary L. Roberts.

    • Hardcover $55.00
  • Folded, Spindled, and Mutilated

    Economic Analysis and U.S.v. IBM

    Franklin M. Fisher, Joen E. Greenwood, and John J. McGowan

    Foreword by Carl Keysen One of the most important antitrust cases in 50 years, U.S. vs. IBM, was filed in 1969 and dropped by the Justice Department in 1982. This economic analysis by participants for the defense argues that the IBM case failed not because the antitrust laws are obsolete, but because the government and its economists made major analytical errors throughout the case. The topics they discuss in this book, which grew from their studies and the trial testimony, range over the standard and important ones in an antitrust case charging single-firm monopolizing: market definition, market share, technical change, entry barriers, behavior (predation), and profitability.

    Folded, Spindled, and Mutilated is a Charles River Associates Study and seventh in The MIT Press series on the Regulation of Economic Activity, edited by Richard Schmalensee.

    • Hardcover $30.00
    • Paperback $16.50
  • Essays on the Structure of Social Science Models

    Essays on the Structure of Social Science Models

    Albert Ando, Franklin M. Fisher, and Herbert A. Simon

    A set of related papers dealing with the meaning of causality in simulataneous dynamic equation systems. Investigation of the systems which only approximately satisfy the conditions enabling the definition of causality, leads to a set of limiting theorems concerning the dynamic behavior of such systems over time, and estimation procedures for the parameters of such systems. Implications of these theorems for some well-known propositions in economics and other social sciences are considered.

    • Hardcover $7.95
    • Paperback $25.00