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Investment under uncertainty and policy change


  • Pawlina, Grzegorz
  • Kort, Peter M.


Existing real options literature provides relatively little insight into the impact of structural changes of the economic environment on the investment decision of the firm.We propose a method to model the impact of a policy change on investment behavior in which, contrary to the earlier models based on Poisson processes, uncertainty concerning the moment of the change can be explicitly accounted for.Moreover, probabilities of the change depend on the state of the dynamic system, what ensures the consistency of the action of the policy maker. We model the policy change as an upward jump in the (net) investment cost, which is, for instance, caused by a reduction in the investment tax credit.The firm has an incomplete information concerning the trigger value of the process for which the jump occurs.We derive the optimal investment rule maximizing the value of the firm.It is shown that the impact of trigger value uncertainty is non-monotonic: the investment threshold decreases with the trigger value uncertainty for low levels of uncertainty, while the reverse is true for high uncertainty levels.Finally, we present policy implications for the authority that result from the firm's value-maximizing behavior.
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  • Pawlina, Grzegorz & Kort, Peter M., 2005. "Investment under uncertainty and policy change," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(7), pages 1193-1209, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:dyncon:v:29:y:2005:i:7:p:1193-1209

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Hassett, Kevin A & Metcalf, Gilbert E, 1999. "Investment with Uncertain Tax Policy: Does Random Tax Policy Discourage Investment?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(457), pages 372-393, July.
    2. Sumru Altug & Michel Demers, 2001. "The Impact of Tax Risk and Persistence on Investment Decisions," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 5(1), pages 1-5.
    3. Lambrecht, Bart & Perraudin, William, 2003. "Real options and preemption under incomplete information," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 619-643, February.
    4. Naik, Vasanttilak, 1993. " Option Valuation and Hedging Strategies with Jumps in the Volatility of Asset Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 48(5), pages 1969-1984, December.
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    6. Cherian, Joseph A. & Perotti, Enrico, 2001. "Option pricing and foreign investment under political risk," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 359-377, December.
    7. Paolo M. Panteghini & Carlo Scarpa, 2003. "Irreversible Investments and Regulatory Risk," CESifo Working Paper Series 934, CESifo Group Munich.
    8. Marc Baudry, 2000. "Joint Management of Emission Abatement and Technological Innovation for Stock Externalities," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 16(2), pages 161-183, June.
    9. Pennings, Enrico, 2000. "Taxes and stimuli of investment under uncertainty," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 383-391, February.
    10. Robert McDonald & Daniel Siegel, 1986. "The Value of Waiting to Invest," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 101(4), pages 707-727.
    11. Hartman, Richard, 1976. "Factor Demand with Output Price Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 66(4), pages 675-681, September.
    12. Lander, Diane M. & Pinches, George E., 1998. "Challenges to the Practical Implementation of Modeling and Valuing Real Options," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 38(3, Part 2), pages 537-567.
    13. Rothschild, Michael & Stiglitz, Joseph E., 1970. "Increasing risk: I. A definition," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 225-243, September.
    14. Mauer, David C. & Ott, Steven H., 1995. "Investment under Uncertainty: The Case of Replacement Investment Decisions," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 30(04), pages 581-605, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Lambie, Neil Ross, 2010. "Understanding the effect of an emissions trading scheme on electricity generator investment and retirement behaviour: the proposed Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 54(2), June.
    2. Wilson, Nathan E., 2012. "Uncertain regulatory timing and market dynamics," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 102-115.
    3. Gryglewicz, Sebastian & Huisman, Kuno J.M. & Kort, Peter M., 2008. "Finite project life and uncertainty effects on investment," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 32(7), pages 2191-2213, July.
    4. Ortmann, Regina, 2015. "Uncertainty in weighting formulary apportionment factors and its impact on after-tax income of multinational groups," arqus Discussion Papers in Quantitative Tax Research 184, arqus - Arbeitskreis Quantitative Steuerlehre.
    5. Nishide, Katsumasa & Yagi, Kyoko, 2016. "Investment under regime uncertainty: Impact of competition and preemption," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 47-58.
    6. Graham, Jeffrey, 2011. "Strategic real options under asymmetric information," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 35(6), pages 922-934, June.
    7. Kang, Sang Baum & Létourneau, Pascal, 2016. "Investors’ reaction to the government credibility problem: A real option analysis of emission permit policy risk," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 96-107.
    8. repec:eee:jbfina:v:81:y:2017:i:c:p:207-220 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Makoto Goto & Katsumasa Nishide & Ryuta Takashima, 2013. "Irreversible Investment under Competition with a Markov Switching Regime," KIER Working Papers 861, Kyoto University, Institute of Economic Research.
    10. Nishide, Katsumasa & Nomi, Ernesto Kazuhiro, 2009. "Regime uncertainty and optimal investment timing," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 33(10), pages 1796-1807, October.
    11. repec:gam:jrisks:v:6:y:2018:i:1:p:5-:d:128119 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C61 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Optimization Techniques; Programming Models; Dynamic Analysis
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • G31 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Capital Budgeting; Fixed Investment and Inventory Studies


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