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An Experimental Analysis of the Impact of Intermediaries on the Outcome of Bargaining Games

  • Abdullah Yavas
  • Thomas J. Miceli
  • C.F. Sirmans

We conduct an experimental analysis of the bargaining between a buyer and a seller of the exchange of a single good by means of an intermediary or broker. We examine how an intermediary affects the price, the likelihood of a successful negotiation, and the time it takes to complete a negotiation. We first examine the impact of the intermediary as a pure middleman, and then as an information source about the distribution of seller and buyer reservation prices. The results show that an intermediary, whether or not informed, increases the sale price, reduces the likelihood of an agreement, and increases the time to reach an agreement (though the number of bargaining rounds declines). The results suggest that the benefits of brokerage may be predominantly in the matching of buyers and sellers rather than in facilitating bargaining. Copyright 2001 by the American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association.

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Article provided by American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association in its journal Real Estate Economics.

Volume (Year): 29 (2001)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 251-276

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Handle: RePEc:bla:reesec:v:29:y:2001:i:2:p:251-276
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