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Standard Breach Remedies, Quality Thresholds, and Cooperative Investments

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  • Alexander Stremitzer

Abstract

When investments are nonverifiable, inducing cooperative investments with simple contracts may not be as difficult as previously thought. Indeed, modeling "expectation damages" close to legal practice, we show that the commonly applied remedy of US contract law induces the first best. Yet, to lower informational requirements of courts, parties may opt for a "specific performance" regime, which grants the breached-against buyer an option to choose "restitution" if the tender's value falls below some (arbitrarily chosen) quality threshold. To implement this regime, no more information needs to be verifiable than is implicitly assumed in Che and Hausch (1999. "Cooperative Investments and the Value of Contracting," 89 American Economic Review 125--47). (JEL K12, L22, J41, C70) The Author 2010. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Yale University. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oxfordjournals.org, Oxford University Press.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Oxford University Press in its journal The Journal of Law, Economics, & Organization.

Volume (Year): 28 (2012)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 337-359

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Handle: RePEc:oup:jleorg:v:28:y::i:2:p:337-359

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  1. Edlin, Aaron S & Hermalin, Benjamin E, 2000. "Contract Renegotiation and Options in Agency Problems," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 16(2), pages 395-423, October.
  2. Williamson, Oliver E, 1979. "Transaction-Cost Economics: The Governance of Contractural Relations," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 22(2), pages 233-61, October.
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  4. Guriev Sergei, 2003. "Incomplete Contracts with Cross-Investments," The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 3(1), pages 1-32, August.
  5. Yeon-Koo Che & Tai-Yeong Chung, 1999. "Contract Damages and Cooperative Investments," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 30(1), pages 84-105, Spring.
  6. Urs Schweizer, 2006. "Cooperative investments induced by contract law," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 37(1), pages 134-145, 03.
  7. repec:att:wimass:9714 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. Georg Nöldeke & Klaus M. Schmidt, 1992. "Option Contracts and Renegotiation - A Solution to the Hold-Up Problem," Discussion Paper Serie A 417, University of Bonn, Germany, revised Aug 1993.
  9. Hardman Moore, John & Hart, Oliver, 1985. "Incomplete Contracts and Renegotiation," CEPR Discussion Papers 60, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Edlin, Aaron S, 1996. "Cadillac Contracts and Up-Front Payments: Efficient Investment under Expectation Damages," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 12(1), pages 98-118, April.
  11. MacLeod, W Bentley & Malcomson, James M, 1993. "Investments, Holdup, and the Form of Market Contracts," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(4), pages 811-37, September.
  12. Oliver Hart & Sanford Grossman, 1985. "The Costs and Benefits of Ownership: A Theory of Vertical and Lateral Integration," Working papers 372, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  13. Jonathan M. Karpoff & D. Scott Lee & Valaria P. Vendrzyk, 1999. "Defense Procurement Fraud, Penalties, and Contractor Influence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(4), pages 809-842, August.
  14. Edlin, Aaron S & Reichelstein, Stefan, 1996. "Holdups, Standard Breach Remedies, and Optimal Investment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 478-501, June.
  15. Mathias Dewatripont & Philippe Aghion & Patrick Rey, 1994. "Renegotiation design with unverifiable information," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/9591, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  16. Donald B. Hausch & Yeon-Koo Che, 1999. "Cooperative Investments and the Value of Contracting," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(1), pages 125-147, March.
  17. Chung, Tai-Yeong, 1991. "Incomplete Contracts, Specific Investments, and Risk Sharing," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(5), pages 1031-42, October.
  18. Aghion, Philippe & Bolton, Patrick, 1987. "Contracts as a Barrier to Entry," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(3), pages 388-401, June.
  19. Brooks, Richard & Stremitzer, Alexander, 2009. "On and Off Contract Remedies," Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems 290, Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich.
  20. Steven Shavell, 1980. "Damage Measures for Breach of Contract," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 11(2), pages 466-490, Autumn.
  21. Rosenkranz, Stephanie & Schmitz, Patrick W., 1999. "Know-how disclosure and incomplete contracts," MPRA Paper 12533, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  22. Ronen Avraham & Zhiyong Liu, 2006. "Incomplete Contracts with Asymmetric Information: Exclusive Versus Optional Remedies," American Law and Economics Review, Oxford University Press, vol. 8(3), pages 523-561.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Göller, Daniel & Stremitzer, Alexander, 2009. "Breach Remedies Including Hybrid Investments," Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems 282, Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich.
  2. Hideshi Itoh & Hodaka Morita, 2011. "Formal Contracts, Relational Contracts, and the Threat-Point Effect," CESifo Working Paper Series 3533, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Goller, Daniel & Stremitzer, Alexander, 2009. "Breach Remedies Inducing Hybrid Investments," Working Papers 72, Yale University, Department of Economics.
  4. Schmitz, Patrick W., 2010. "On contractual solutions to hold-up problems with quality uncertainty and unobservable investments," MPRA Paper 23157, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Schmitz, Patrick W., 2010. "Contractual solutions to hold-up problems with quality uncertainty and unobservable investments," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(5), pages 807-816, September.
  6. Göller, Daniel, 2012. "Expectation Damages and Bilateral Cooperative Investments," Annual Conference 2012 (Goettingen): New Approaches and Challenges for the Labor Market of the 21st Century 62047, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  7. Watson, Joel & Buzard, Kristy, 2012. "Contract, renegotiation, and hold up: Results on the technology of trade and investment," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 7(2), May.

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