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Principal and Expert Agent

  • Malcomson James M

    ()

    (University of Oxford)

This paper analyses principal-agent contracts when the risk-averse agent's action generates information that is not directly verifiable but is used to make a risky decision in a formulation more general than previously studied. It focuses on the impact on the decision made and the contract used, establishing a necessary and sufficient condition for the principal to gain by distorting decisions away from what is efficient and conditions under which there is no conflict between incentives to make decisions and to take action. Applications to investing in a risky project and bidding to supply a good or service illustrate those results.

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Article provided by De Gruyter in its journal The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics.

Volume (Year): 9 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 (May)
Pages: 1-36

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Handle: RePEc:bpj:bejtec:v:9:y:2009:i:1:n:17
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  1. Aghion, Philippe & Tirole, Jean, 1997. "Formal and Real Authority in Organizations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(1), pages 1-29, February.
  2. Khalil, F & Rochet, J-C, 1997. "Contracts and Productive Information Gathering," Discussion Papers in Economics at the University of Washington 97-16, Department of Economics at the University of Washington.
  3. Jewitt, Ian, 1988. "Justifying the First-Order Approach to Principal-Agent Problems," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(5), pages 1177-90, September.
  4. Cremer, Jacques & Khalil, Fahad, 1992. "Gathering Information before Signing a Contract," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 566-78, June.
  5. Dezso Szalay, 2006. "Contracts with Endogenous Information," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 780, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  6. Sanford Grossman & Oliver Hart, . "An Analysis of the Principal-Agent Problem," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 15-80, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
  7. Khalil, F & Rochet, J-C, 1997. "Strategic Information Gathering Before a Contract is Offered," Discussion Papers in Economics at the University of Washington 97-15, Department of Economics at the University of Washington.
  8. Gromb, Denis & Martimort, David, 2004. "The Organization of Delegated Expertise," CEPR Discussion Papers 4572, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Feess, Eberhard & Walzl, Markus, 2004. "Delegated expertise--when are good projects bad news?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 82(1), pages 77-82, January.
  10. Rogerson, William P, 1985. "The First-Order Approach to Principal-Agent Problems," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(6), pages 1357-67, November.
  11. Bruno Biais & Catherine Casamatta, 1999. "Optimal Leverage and Aggregate Investment," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 54(4), pages 1291-1323, 08.
  12. Palomino, Frederic & Prat, Andrea, 2003. " Risk Taking and Optimal Contracts for Money Managers," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 34(1), pages 113-37, Spring.
  13. Barron, John M. & Waddell, Glen R., 2003. "Executive rank, pay and project selection," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 305-349, February.
  14. Lewis, Tracy R & Sappington, David E M, 1997. "Information Management in Incentive Problems," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(4), pages 796-821, August.
  15. Mirrlees, J A, 1999. "The Theory of Moral Hazard and Unobservable Behaviour: Part I," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 66(1), pages 3-21, January.
  16. Innes, Robert D., 1990. "Limited liability and incentive contracting with ex-ante action choices," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 45-67, October.
  17. Oliver Hart & Bengt Holmstrom, 1986. "The Theory of Contracts," Working papers 418, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  18. Osband, Kent, 1989. "Optimal Forecasting Incentives," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(5), pages 1091-1112, October.
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