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Contractual Externalities and Common Agency Equilibria

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  • Martimort, David
  • Stole, Lars

Abstract

This paper characterizes the equilibrium sets of common agency games with direct externalities between principals when they compete with nonlinear prices. Direct externalities arise when the contracting variable of one principal directly affects the other principal's payoff. First, we characterize the set of pure-strategy, symmetric equilibria under complete information of an intrinsic common agency game. This set of equilibria is large because of the presence of price-output offers by the principals that are unchosen by the agent in equilibrium. Equilibria exist in which principals offer out-of-equilibrium price-output choices to the agent and induce aggressive, low-price behavior corresponding to marginal-cost pricing in the extreme case. We then show that this equilibrium set of outputs is robust to the possibility that agent refuses any of the offered contracts; the case of delegated agency. Second, we introduce asymmetric information in order to rationalize existing nonlinear pricing contracts. The introduction of asymmetric information has the effect of restricting the set of equilibrium outputs of the intrinsic common agency game.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse in its series IDEI Working Papers with number 110.

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Date of creation: 1999
Date of revision: 2003
Publication status: Published in Advances in Theoretical Economics, vol.�3, n°1, 2003.
Handle: RePEc:ide:wpaper:630

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  2. Martimort, David, 1994. "Exclusive Dealing, Common Agency and Multiprincipals Incentive Theory," IDEI Working Papers 43, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse, revised 1996.
  3. Green, Jerry & Laffont, Jean-Jacques, 1977. "Characterization of Satisfactory Mechanisms for the Revelation of Preferences for Public Goods," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(2), pages 427-38, March.
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  6. Laussel, Didier & Le Breton, Michel, 2001. "Conflict and Cooperation: The Structure of Equilibrium Payoffs in Common Agency," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 100(1), pages 93-128, September.
  7. Michael Peters, 1999. "Common Agency and the Revelation Principle," Working Papers peters-99-01, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
  8. Harris Milton & Townsend, Robert M, 1981. "Resource Allocation under Asymmetric Information," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(1), pages 33-64, January.
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  10. Katz, Michael L., 1991. "Game-Playing Agents: Unobservable Contracts as Precommitments," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt79b870w0, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  11. Martimort, David, 1992. "Multi-Principaux avec Anti-Sélection," IDEI Working Papers 14, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  12. Giacomo Calzolari, 2004. "Incentive Regulation of Multinational Enterprises," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 45(1), pages 257-282, 02.
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  14. Laffont, J.J. & Martimort, D., 1996. "The Firm as a Multicontact Organization," Papers 95.390, Toulouse - GREMAQ.
  15. Klemperer, Paul D & Meyer, Margaret A, 1989. "Supply Function Equilibria in Oligopoly under Uncertainty," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(6), pages 1243-77, November.
  16. David Martimort & Lars Stole, 2002. "The Revelation and Delegation Principles in Common Agency Games," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(4), pages 1659-1673, July.
  17. Caillaud, Bernard & Jullien, B & Picard, P, 1995. "Competing Vertical Structures: Precommitment and Renegotiation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(3), pages 621-46, May.
  18. Myerson, Roger B, 1979. "Incentive Compatibility and the Bargaining Problem," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(1), pages 61-73, January.
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  20. Myerson, Roger B., 1982. "Optimal coordination mechanisms in generalized principal-agent problems," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 67-81, June.
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