nep-cul New Economics Papers
on Cultural Economics
Issue of 2014‒11‒07
four papers chosen by
Roberto Zanola
Università degli Studi del Piemonte Orientale “Amedeo Avogadro”

  1. YouTube Decade: Cultural Convergence in Recorded Music By Lisa M. George; Christian Peukert
  2. Is Art Really a Safe Haven? Evidence from the French Art Market During WWI By Geraldine David
  3. E-book Pricing and Vertical Restraints By Babur De los Santos; Matthijs Wildenbeest
  4. Developpement de l'Industrie Creative et Reduction du Chomage des Jeunes au Cameroun: une approche par la Matrice de Comptabilite Sociale By Christian Lambert Nguena

  1. By: Lisa M. George (Hunter College and the Graduate Center, CUNY, Department of Economics, Hunter College, 695 Park Ave., New York, NY 10065); Christian Peukert (University of Zurich, Department of Business Administration, Plattenstrasse 14, 8032 Zurich, Switzerland)
    Abstract: The YouTube platform reduces fixed entry costs for local artists but also lowers the cost of access to international superstars. The net effect is an empirical question. We study the effect of YouTube on the market for music, focusing on converging tastes for international hits. We consider Austria and Germany, which share a common culture and technological development but differ in access to music videos on YouTube. Exploiting a contract dispute that has blocked official music videos in Germany since 2009, we find that YouTube increases the number of US hits on European charts. We further find evidence that YouTube speeds the hit-making cycle and brings more unique titles to top charts. Although the superstar effect dominates, the magnitude of estimated effects are modest, suggesting that YouTube will not drive out the market for local music
    Keywords: Digitization; Cultural Trade; Music Videos
    JEL: L82 O33 D83
    Date: 2014–09
  2. By: Geraldine David
    Abstract: During crisis art is often considered as a safe haven both by the scientific literature and the financial advisors. For example, during WWII art markets encountered a massive boom in occupied countries This paper questions this vision of art as a safe investment providing evidence that art has not always supplied a safe investing way during crisis. To do so it constructs, on basis of an original database of 22,000 entries, an art price index for the French art market during WWI and the postwar period in France (1911-1925). The results show that the WWII boom mostly reflected the specificities of the occupation economy imposed by the Nazis. Indeed during WWI artworks underperformed gold, real-estate, bonds and stocks in terms of risk-return performances. This underperformance can be explained by several peculiarities of the market. Investors tended to prefer cheap artworks and old masters during WWI as these were less volatile at the time.
    Keywords: Art markets; Art investment; WWI; France; War; Postwar
    JEL: N14 N24 N44 Z11
    Date: 2014–10–10
  3. By: Babur De los Santos (Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, 1309 E 10th St, Bloomington, IN 47405, USA); Matthijs Wildenbeest (Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, 1309 E 10th St, Bloomington, IN 47405, USA)
    Abstract: This paper empirically analyzes how the use of vertical price restraints has impacted retail prices in the market for e-books. In 2010 five of the six largest publishers simultaneously adopted the agency model of book sales, allowing them to directly set retail prices. This led the Department of Justice to file suit against the publishers in 2012, the settlement of which prevents the publishers from interfering with retailers' ability to set e-book prices. Using a unique dataset of daily e-book prices for a large sample of books across major online retailers, we exploit cross-publisher variation in the timing of the return to the wholesale model to estimate its effect on retail prices. We find that e-book prices for titles that were previously sold using the agency model decreased by 18 percent at Amazon and 8 percent at Barnes & Noble. Our results are robust to different specifications, placebo tests, and synthetic control groups. Our findings illustrate a case where upstream firms prefer to set higher retail prices than retailers and help to clarify conflicting theoretical predictions on agency versus wholesale models.
    Keywords: e-books, agency, vertical restraints, most favored nation, media economics, resale price maintenance, Amazon
    JEL: D43 D83 L13 L41 L42
    Date: 2014–09
  4. By: Christian Lambert Nguena (Association of African Young Economists)
    Abstract: The aim of this article is to examine and measure the importance of the development of the creative industry in the fight against youth unemployment in Cameroon. Based on data both from an existing data base and a small survey we undertook, we have conducted prior a statistical analysis of the labor market to describe the importance of youth unemployment issue in Cameroon and highlighted the usefulness of development of creative industries as a potential solution to this problem. Thereafter, using the social accounting matrix that we constructed previously, we have made an analysis of the feasibility and impact of the development of creative activities on youth employment reduction. This analysis allowed us to highlight the fact that youth are the most affected by unemployment. It also showed the potential of the development of creative industry to solve this problem. These results led us to some practical policy recommendations for the development of the creative industry of Cameroon which, with its multidimensional aspect, could contribute more to absorb much of youth unemployment.
    Keywords: Chomage des jeunes, Industrie creative, Matrice des comptabilite sociale (MCS), Marche du travail
    JEL: H00 J21 J23 Z19
    Date: 2013–04

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