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Market Culture: How Rules Governing Exploding Offers Affect Market Performance

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  • Muriel Niederle
  • Alvin E. Roth

Abstract

Many markets encounter difficulty maintaining a thick marketplace because they experience transactions made at dispersed times. To address such problems, many markets try to establish norms concerning when offers can be made, accepted, and rejected. Examining such markets suggests it is difficult to establish a thick market at an efficient time if firms can make exploding offers, and workers cannot renege on early commitments. Laboratory experiments allow us to isolate the effects of exploding offers and binding acceptances. In a simple experiment, we find inefficient early contracting when firms can make exploding offers and applicants' acceptances are binding. (JEL C91, D40, D81)

Suggested Citation

  • Muriel Niederle & Alvin E. Roth, 2009. "Market Culture: How Rules Governing Exploding Offers Affect Market Performance," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(2), pages 199-219, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aejmic:v:1:y:2009:i:2:p:199-219 Note: DOI: 10.1257/mic.1.2.199
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Alvin E. Roth & Axel Ockenfels, 2002. "Last-Minute Bidding and the Rules for Ending Second-Price Auctions: Evidence from eBay and Amazon Auctions on the Internet," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 1093-1103.
    2. Alvin E. Roth, 2009. "What Have We Learned from Market Design?," Innovation Policy and the Economy, University of Chicago Press, pages 79-112.
    3. Guillaume R. Fréchette & Alvin E. Roth & M. Utku Ünver, 2007. "Unraveling yields inefficient matchings: evidence from post-season college football bowls," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, pages 967-982.
    4. C. Nicholas McKinney & Muriel Niederle & Alvin E. Roth, 2005. "The Collapse of a Medical Labor Clearinghouse (and Why Such Failures Are Rare)," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 878-889.
    5. Milgrom,Paul, 2004. "Putting Auction Theory to Work," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521536721, December.
    6. Muriel Niederle & Alvin E. Roth, 2003. "Unraveling Reduces Mobility in a Labor Market: Gastroenterology with and without a Centralized Match," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(6), pages 1342-1352, December.
    7. Alvin E. Roth, 2007. "Repugnance as a Constraint on Markets," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, pages 37-58.
    8. Roth, Alvin E, 1984. "The Evolution of the Labor Market for Medical Interns and Residents: A Case Study in Game Theory," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 92(6), pages 991-1016, December.
    9. Alvin E. Roth, 2002. "The Economist as Engineer: Game Theory, Experimentation, and Computation as Tools for Design Economics," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(4), pages 1341-1378, July.
    10. Haruvy, Ernan & Roth, Alvin E. & Unver, M. Utku, 2006. "The dynamics of law clerk matching: An experimental and computational investigation of proposals for reform of the market," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 457-486, March.
    11. Muriel Niederle & Alvin E. Roth, 2009. "The Effects of a Centralized Clearinghouse on Job Placement, Wages, and Hiring Practices," NBER Chapters,in: Studies of Labor Market Intermediation, pages 235-271 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Muriel Niederle & Alvin E. Roth, 2005. "The Gastroenterology Fellowship Market: Should There Be a Match?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 372-375.
    13. John H. Kagel & Alvin E. Roth, 2000. "The Dynamics of Reorganization in Matching Markets: A Laboratory Experiment Motivated by a Natural Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(1), pages 201-235.
    14. Roth, Alvin E, 1991. "A Natural Experiment in the Organization of Entry-Level Labor Markets: Regional Markets for New Physicians and Surgeons in the United Kingdom," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 415-440.
    15. Mongell, Susan & Roth, Alvin E, 1991. "Sorority Rush as a Two-Sided Matching Mechanism," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 441-464.
    16. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Peter Coles & John Cawley & Phillip B. Levine & Muriel Niederle & Alvin E. Roth & John J. Siegfried, 2010. "The Job Market for New Economists: A Market Design Perspective," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, pages 187-206.
    2. Lee, Kangoh, 2012. "Early selection and moral hazard," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 116(2), pages 139-142.
    3. Chen, Yan & Fehr, Ernst & Fischbacher, Urs & Morgan, Peter, 2015. "Decentralized matching and social segregation," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 90(C), pages 17-43.
    4. Agranov, M. & Elliott, M., 2017. "Commitment and (In)Efficiency: A Bargaining Experiment," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1743, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    5. Fainmesser, Itay P., 2013. "Social networks and unraveling in labor markets," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, pages 64-103.
    6. Armstrong, Mark & Zhou, Jidong, 2010. "Exploding offers and buy-now discounts," MPRA Paper 22531, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Gary Bolton & Ben Greiner & Axel Ockenfels, 2013. "Engineering Trust: Reciprocity in the Production of Reputation Information," Management Science, INFORMS, pages 265-285.
    8. Charness, Gary & Kuhn, Peter, 2011. "Lab Labor: What Can Labor Economists Learn from the Lab?," Handbook of Labor Economics, Elsevier.
    9. Gary Bolton & Ben Greiner & Axel Ockenfels, 2013. "Engineering Trust: Reciprocity in the Production of Reputation Information," Management Science, INFORMS, pages 265-285.
    10. Muriel Niederle & Leeat Yariv, 2009. "Decentralized Matching with Aligned Preferences," NBER Working Papers 14840, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Alexander L. Brown & Ajalavat Viriyavipart & Xiaoyuan Wang, 2014. "Exploding Offers with Experimental Consumer Goods," Working Papers 20141006-001, Texas A&M University, Department of Economics.
    12. Joana Pais & Ágnes Pintér & Róbert F. Veszteg, 2017. "Decentralized Matching Markets With(out) Frictions: A Laboratory Experiment," Working Papers REM 2017/03, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, REM, Universidade de Lisboa.
    13. Muriel Niederle & Alvin E. Roth & M. Utku Ünver, 2013. "Unraveling Results from Comparable Demand and Supply: An Experimental Investigation," Games, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 4(2), pages 1-40, June.
    14. Phillips, Owen R. & Menkhaus, Dale J., 2010. "The culture of private negotiation: Endogenous price anchors in simple bilateral bargaining experiments," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 705-715, December.
    15. repec:txm:wpaper:20141106-10001 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Peter Coles & John Cawley & Phillip B. Levine & Muriel Niederle & Alvin E. Roth & John J. Siegfried, 2010. "The Job Market for New Economists: A Market Design Perspective," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, pages 187-206.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D40 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - General
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty

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