Price-setting power vs. private information: An experimental evaluation of their impact on holdup
This paper investigates the extent of the holdup problem in a buyer-seller relationship in which the seller has private information about his alternative opportunities. Theory predicts that, compared to a situation in which outside options are publicly observed, the seller obtains an informational rent whereas the buyer bears an informational loss. As a result the seller is predicted to invest more while the buyer is expected to invest less. In contrast to this, private information has no impact on the investment levels observed in the experiment. But actual investments do increase with the price-setting power of the investor. These findings are roughly consistent with a model in which agents are inequality-averse. Overall the results question some recent theoretical suggestions that private information rents might substitute for price-setting power in mitigating holdup.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Ernst Fehr & Klaus M. Schmidt, 1999.
"A Theory of Fairness, Competition, and Cooperation,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 817-868.
- Fehr, Ernst & Schmidt, Klaus M., . "A theory of fairness, competition, and cooperation," Chapters in Economics, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
- Ernst Fehr & Klaus M. Schmidt, "undated". "A Theory of Fairness, Competition and Cooperation," IEW - Working Papers 004, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
- Fehr, Ernst & Schmidt, Klaus M., 1999. "A theory of fairness, competition, and cooperation," Munich Reprints in Economics 20650, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
- Fehr, Ernst & Schmidt, Klaus M., 1998. "A Theory of Fairness, Competition and Cooperation," CEPR Discussion Papers 1812, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Binmore, Ken & McCarthy, John & Ponti, Giovanni & Samuelson, Larry & Shaked, Avner, 2002. "A Backward Induction Experiment," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 104(1), pages 48-88, May.
- Binmore,K. & McCarthy,J. & Ponti,G. & ..., 1999. "A backward induction experiment," Working papers 34, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
- Gul, Faruk, 2001. "Unobservable Investment and the Hold-Up Problem," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(2), pages 343-376, March.
- F. Gul, 2000. "Unobservable Investment and the Hold-Up Problem," Princeton Economic Theory Papers 00s10, Economics Department, Princeton University.
- Tore Ellingsen & Magnus Johannesson, 2004. "Promises, Threats and Fairness," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(495), pages 397-420, 04.
- Hackett, Steven C, 1993. "Incomplete Contracting: A Laboratory Experimental Analysis," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 31(2), pages 274-297, April.
- William P. Rogerson, 1992. "Contractual Solutions to the Hold-Up Problem," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 59(4), pages 777-793.
- Klein, Benjamin & Crawford, Robert G & Alchian, Armen A, 1978. "Vertical Integration, Appropriable Rents, and the Competitive Contracting Process," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(2), pages 297-326, October.
- Patrick Gonzàlez, 2004. "Investment and Screening Under Asymmetric Endogenous Information," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 35(3), pages 502-519, Autumn.
- González, Patrick, 2002. "Investment and Screening under Asymmetric Endogenous Information," Cahiers de recherche 0204, Université Laval - Département d'économique.
- Gonzalez, Patrick, 2002. "Investment and Screening under Asymmetric Endogenous Information," Cahiers de recherche 0201, GREEN.
- Tirole, Jean, 1986. "Procurement and Renegotiation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(2), pages 235-259, April.
- Jean Tirole, 1985. "Procurement and Renegotiation," Working papers 362, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
- Ellingsen, Tore & Johannesson, Magnus, 2005. "Sunk costs and fairness in incomplete information bargaining," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 155-177, February.
- Konrad, Kai A., 2001. "Privacy and time-consistent optimal labor income taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(3), pages 503-519, March.
- James M. Malcomson, 1997. "Contracts, Hold-Up, and Labor Markets," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(4), pages 1916-1957, December.
- Malcomson, J.M., 1997. "Contracts, hold-up and labor markets," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 9703, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
- Hart, Oliver, 1995. "Firms, Contracts, and Financial Structure," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198288817, April.
- Malcomson, James M., 1999. "Individual employment contracts," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 35, pages 2291-2372 Elsevier.
- Malcomson, J., 1998. "Individual employment contracts," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 9804, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
- Sonnemans, Joep & Oosterbeek, Hessel & Sloof, Randolp, 2001. "On the Relation between Asset Ownership and Specific Investments," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(474), pages 791-820, October.
- Sloof, Randolph & Sonnemans, Joep & Oosterbeek, Hessel, 2004. "Specific investments, holdup, and the outside option principle," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(6), pages 1399-1410, December.
- Knez Marc J. & Camerer Colin F., 1995. "Outside Options and Social Comparison in Three-Player Ultimatum Game Experiments," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 65-94, July.
- Randolph Sloof, 2005. "Opting Out: An Experimental Comparison of Bazaars versus High-Tech Markets," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 161(4), pages 589-589, December.
- Berg Joyce & Dickhaut John & McCabe Kevin, 1995. "Trust, Reciprocity, and Social History," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 122-142, July.
- Randolph Sloof & Hessel Oosterbeek & Joep Sonnemans, 2007. "Does Making Specific Investments Unobservable Boost Investment Incentives?," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 16(4), pages 911-942, December. Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)