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"Favors" for Sale: Strategic Analysis of a Simple Menu Auction with Adverse Selection

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  • Didier Laussel

    (Universite de la Mediterranee)

  • Michel Le Breton

    (Universite de Toulouse 1 Gremaq-Idei)

Abstract

We study the distribution of a fixed amount of "favors" by an incumbent politician between two pressure groups, each of them offering to the agent a campaign contribution contingent on the quantity of "favors" received. Assuming that the total amount supplied is a private information of the politician the equilibrium contribution schedules are fully characterized. It is shown that the principals net equilibrium payoffs are larger the more quickly their marginal valuations of the favors decrease with the amount received. The equilibrium allocation of the stock of "favors" is efficient if the interest group utility functions are identical.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Society for AEF in its journal Annals of Economics and Finance.

Volume (Year): 6 (2005)
Issue (Month): 1 (May)
Pages: 53-73

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Handle: RePEc:cuf:journl:y:2005:v:6:i:1:p:53-73

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Keywords: Menu auction; Adverse selection;

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  1. Martimort, David, 1994. "Exclusive Dealing, Common Agency and Multiprincipals Incentive Theory," IDEI Working Papers 43, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse, revised 1996.
  2. Baye, Michael R & Kovenock, Dan & de Vries, Casper G, 1993. "Rigging the Lobbying Process: An Application of the All-Pay Auction," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 289-94, March.
  3. Boylan, R.T., 1997. "Private Bills: A Theoretical and Empirical Study of Lobbying," Washington University 97-04, Business, Law and Economics Center, John M. Olin School of Business, Washington University.
  4. LAUSSEL, Didier & LE BRETON, Michel, . "Conflict and cooperation. The structure of equilibrium payoffs in common agency," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1519, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  5. Grossman, Gene & Helpman, Elhanan, 1993. "Protection for Sale," CEPR Discussion Papers 827, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Grossman, Gene & Helpman, Elhanan, 1993. "Trade Wars and Trade Talks," CEPR Discussion Papers 806, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Baye, M.R. & Kovenock, D. & De Vries, C., 1992. "The All-Pay Auction with Complete Information," Papers 8-92-1, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
  8. Bernheim, B Douglas & Whinston, Michael D, 1986. "Menu Auctions, Resource Allocation, and Economic Influence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 101(1), pages 1-31, February.
  9. James M. Snyder, 1991. "On Buying Legislatures," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 3(2), pages 93-109, 07.
  10. Amann, Erwin & Leininger, Wolfgang, 1996. "Asymmetric All-Pay Auctions with Incomplete Information: The Two-Player Case," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 1-18, May.
  11. Lohmann, Susanne, 1995. " Information, Access, and Contributions: A Signaling Model of Lobbying," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 85(3-4), pages 267-84, December.
  12. Snyder, James M, Jr, 1990. "Campaign Contributions as Investments: The U.S. House of Representatives, 1980-1986," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(6), pages 1195-1227, December.
  13. Pinelopi Koujianou Goldbe & Giovanni Maggi, 1997. "Protection for Sale: An Empirical Investigation," NBER Working Papers 5942, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. David MARTIMORT, 1992. "Multi-principaux avec anti-sélection," Annales d'Economie et de Statistique, ENSAE, issue 28, pages 1-37.
  15. Krueger, Anne O, 1974. "The Political Economy of the Rent-Seeking Society," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 64(3), pages 291-303, June.
  16. Becker, Gary S, 1983. "A Theory of Competition among Pressure Groups for Political Influence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 98(3), pages 371-400, August.
  17. Steven D. Levitt, 1995. "Policy Watch: Congressional Campaign Finance Reform," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(1), pages 183-193, Winter.
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