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Optimal Regulation in the Presence of Reputation Concerns

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  • Andrew Atkeson
  • Christian Hellwig
  • Guillermo Ordonez

Abstract

We study a market with free entry and exit of firms who can produce high-quality output by making a costly but efficient initial unobservable investment. If no learning about this investment occurs, an extreme "lemons problem" develops, no firm invests, and the market shuts down. Learning introduces reputation incentives such that a fraction of entrants do invest. If the market operates with spot prices, simple regulation can enhance the role of reputation to induce investment, thus mitigating the "lemons problem" and improving welfare.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 17898.

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Date of creation: Mar 2012
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17898

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References

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  1. George J. Mailath & Larry Samuelson, . ""Who Wants a Good Reputation?''," CARESS Working Papres 98-12, University of Pennsylvania Center for Analytic Research and Economics in the Social Sciences.
  2. Prescott, Edward C & Townsend, Robert M, 1984. "Pareto Optima and Competitive Equilibria with Adverse Selection and Moral Hazard," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(1), pages 21-45, January.
  3. Alessandro Lizzeri, 1999. "Information Revelation and Certification Intermediaries," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 30(2), pages 214-231, Summer.
  4. Klein, Benjamin & Leffler, Keith B, 1981. "The Role of Market Forces in Assuring Contractual Performance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(4), pages 615-41, August.
  5. Walter Garcia-Fontes & Hugo Hopenhayn, 2000. "Entry restrictions and the determination of quality," Spanish Economic Review, Springer, vol. 2(2), pages 105-127.
  6. Johannes H�rner, 2002. "Reputation and Competition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(3), pages 644-663, June.
  7. Heski Bar-Isaac, 2003. "Reputation and Survival: Learning in a Dynamic Signalling Model," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(2), pages 231-251.
  8. Steven Tadelis, 1999. "What's in a Name? Reputation as a Tradeable Asset," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 548-563, June.
  9. Moritz Meyer-ter-Vehn & Simon Board, 2009. "Reputation for Quality," 2009 Meeting Papers 160, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  10. Hopenhayn, Hugo A, 1992. "Entry, Exit, and Firm Dynamics in Long Run Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(5), pages 1127-50, September.
  11. Shapiro, Carl, 1983. "Premiums for High Quality Products as Returns to Reputations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 98(4), pages 659-79, November.
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  13. Shaked, Avner & Sutton, John, 1981. "The Self-Regulating Profession," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(2), pages 217-34, April.
  14. Akerlof, George A, 1970. "The Market for 'Lemons': Quality Uncertainty and the Market Mechanism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 84(3), pages 488-500, August.
  15. Howard P. Marvel & Stephen McCafferty, 1984. "Resale Price Maintenance and Quality Certification," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(3), pages 346-359, Autumn.
  16. Mailath, George J & Samuelson, Larry, 2001. "Who Wants a Good Reputation? Erratum," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 68(3), pages 714, July.
  17. Maksimovic, Vojislav & Titman, Sheridan, 1991. "Financial Policy and Reputation for Product Quality," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 4(1), pages 175-200.
  18. Richard Arnott & Bruce Greenwald & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1993. "Information and Economic Efficiency," NBER Working Papers 4533, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. W. Bentley MacLeod, 2007. "Reputations, Relationships, and Contract Enforcement," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 45(3), pages 595-628, September.
  20. Alós-Ferrer, Carlos & Prat, Julien, 2008. "Job Market Signaling and Employer Learning," IZA Discussion Papers 3285, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Guillermo L. Ordoñez, 2009. "Fragility of reputation and clustering of risk-taking," Staff Report 431, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  2. Bernardita Vial & Felipe Zurita, 2013. "Reputation-Driven Industry Dynamics," Documentos de Trabajo 436, Instituto de Economia. Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile..
  3. Bruno Jullien & In-Uck Park, 2009. "Seller Reputation and Trust in Pre-Trade Communication," Levine's Working Paper Archive 814577000000000330, David K. Levine.
  4. Jacek Rothert, 2009. "Monitoring, Moral Hazard and Turnover," Department of Economics Working Papers 130124, The University of Texas at Austin, Department of Economics, revised Sep 2012.
  5. Guillermo Ordonez, 2013. "Sustainable Shadow Banking," NBER Working Papers 19022, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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