Quality Ambiguity and the Market Mechanism for Credence Goods
AbstractWith credence goods consumers cannot judge actual quality neither before purchase (ex ante) nor after purchase (ex post). Trust has to replace own examination and verification. Applying Choquet-Expected Utility theory, ageneral model of credence goods is developed wich takes the problem of trust explicitly in its view and generalizes the problem of quality uncertainty on the 'market for lemmons' of Akerlof (1970) to 'quality ambiguity' with credence goods. The model shows the market mechanism only performing well in providing credence goods when consumers' trust in given information is not too low. With trust too low, sellers of credence good will be driven out of the market by trust induced adverse selection. In market equilibrium prices will always be lower compared to equilibrium prices for experience goods.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Universitaet Hohenheim, Institute of Agricultural Policy and Agricultural Markets in its series Working Papers with number 98639.
Date of creation: Aug 2004
Date of revision:
credence goods; asymmetric information; quality ambiguity; quality uncertainty; adverse selection; ambiguity; choquet expected utility; Agricultural and Food Policy; Marketing; C72; D81; D82;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
- D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
- D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
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