IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Impossibility of Efficient Decision Rules for Firms in Competitive Stock Market Economies


  • Forsythe, Robert
  • Suchanek, Gerry L.


Considerable attention has been focused recently on models of firms under uncertainty in which there is an incomplete set of securities markets. In these models, each firm can issue only one security and consumers can generate consumption plans only through the purchase of firms' securities. Consequently, if the economy is competitive, each stockholder of a firm will impute the same value to the firm in equilibrium, where this value is given by the market price of the firm's security. However, stockholders will not, in general, have the same implicit prices for state-contingent consumption. Since the financial market is said to be incomplete if the number of independent securities is less than the number of states of nature, consumers cannot hedge perfectly, whichimplies that unconstrained Pareto-optimal allocations are not generally attainable (see [2] and [3]). Finally, it is unclear what firms' objectives should be in these models because profit maximization is not well defined; firms' profits in different states cannot be aggregated into a single index. It is still generally accepted, however, that firms should operate in their own stockholders'interests, a necessary condition for allocative efficiency.

Suggested Citation

  • Forsythe, Robert & Suchanek, Gerry L., 1982. "The Impossibility of Efficient Decision Rules for Firms in Competitive Stock Market Economies," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 17(4), pages 555-574, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:jfinqa:v:17:y:1982:i:04:p:555-574_01

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: link to article abstract page
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cup:jfinqa:v:17:y:1982:i:04:p:555-574_01. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Keith Waters). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.