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Pirates of the Mediterranean: An Empirical Investigation of Bargaining with Transaction Costs

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  • Attila Ambrus
  • Eric Chaney
  • Igor Salitskiy
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    Abstract

    This paper uses ransom prices and time to ransom for over 10,000 captives rescued from two Barbary strongholds to investigate the empirical relevance of dynamic bargaining models with one-sided asymmetric information in ransoming settings. We observe both multiple negotiations that were ex ante similar from the uninformed party’s (seller’s) point of view, and information that only the buyer knew. Through reduced form analysis, we test some common qualitative predictions of dynamic bargaining models. We also structurally estimate the model in Cramton (1991), to compare negotiations in different Barbary strongholds. Our estimates suggest that the historical bargaining institutions were remarkably efficient, despite the presence of substantial asymmetric information.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Duke University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 11-24.

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    Length: 52
    Date of creation: 2011
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:duk:dukeec:11-24

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    Postal: Department of Economics Duke University 213 Social Sciences Building Box 90097 Durham, NC 27708-0097
    Phone: (919) 660-1800
    Fax: (919) 684-8974
    Web page: http://econ.duke.edu/

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    Cited by:
    1. Tim Besley & Thiemo Fetzer & Hannes Mueller, 2012. "One Kind of Lawlessness: Estimating the Welfare Cost of Somali Piracy," Working Papers 626, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.

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