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Using or Hiding Private Information? An experimental Study of Zero-Sum Repeated Games with Incomplete Information

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Abstract

This paper studies experimentally the value of private information in strictly competitive interactions with asymmetric information. We implement in the laboratory three examples from the class of zero-sum repeated games with incomplete information on one side and perfect monitoring. The stage games share the same simple structure, but differ markedly on how information should be optimally used once they are repeated. Despite the complexity of the optimal strategies, the empirical value of information coincides with the theoretical prediction in most instances. In particular, it is never negative, it decreases with the number of repetitions, and it is nicely bounded below by the value of the infinitely repeated game and above by the value of the one-shot game. Subjects are unable to completely ignore their information when it is optimal to do so, but the use of information in the lab reacts qualitatively well to the type and length of the game being played.

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File URL: ftp://mse.univ-paris1.fr/pub/mse/CES2011/11002.pdf
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Paper provided by Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne in its series Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne with number 11002.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2011
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Handle: RePEc:mse:cesdoc:11002

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Keywords: Concavification; laboratory experiments; incomplete information; value of information; zero-sum repeated games.;

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  1. Sergiu Hart & Andreu Mas-Colell, 1996. "A simple adaptive procedure leading to correlated equilibrium," Economics Working Papers 200, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Dec 1996.
  2. Ananish Chaudhuri, 1997. "The Ratchet Principle in a Principal Agent Game with Unknown Costs: An Experimental Analysis," Departmental Working Papers 199608, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
  3. Feltovich, Nick, 1999. "Equilibrium and reinforcement learning in private-information games: An experimental study," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 23(9-10), pages 1605-1632, September.
  4. Robert J. Aumann, 1995. "Repeated Games with Incomplete Information," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262011476, December.
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