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Self-Fulfilling Early-Contracting Rush


  • Hao Li
  • Wing Suen


In markets for entry-level professionals, the insurance motive drives some participants to sign early contracts. The rush to early contracting can be self-fulfilling, as both its effect on expectations about demand-supply balance in the subsequent spot market and the effect on it from changes in the demand-supply balance can be nonmonotone. Matching markets with more risk-averse participants, a greater uncertainty regarding relative supply of positions, or a more polarized distribution of applicant qualities are more vulnerable to self-fulfilling early-contracting rushes. Employers can have a collective interest in preventing early offers to a few promising applicants from starting the rushes. Copyright 2004 by the Economics Department Of The University Of Pennsylvania And Osaka University Institute Of Social And Economic Research Association.

Suggested Citation

  • Hao Li & Wing Suen, 2004. "Self-Fulfilling Early-Contracting Rush," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 45(1), pages 301-324, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:ier:iecrev:v:45:y:2004:i:1:p:301-324

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    Cited by:

    1. Olivier Bos & Martin Ranger, 2018. "Risk and Unraveling in Labor Markets," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, issue 129, pages 127-144.
    2. Alvin Roth, 2008. "Deferred acceptance algorithms: history, theory, practice, and open questions," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer;Game Theory Society, vol. 36(3), pages 537-569, March.
    3. Guillaume R. Fréchette & Alvin E. Roth & M. Utku Ünver, 2007. "Unraveling yields inefficient matchings: evidence from post-season college football bowls," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 38(4), pages 967-982, December.
    4. Ambuehl, Sandro & Groves, Vivienne, 2020. "Unraveling over time," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 121(C), pages 252-264.
    5. Muriel Niederle & Alvin E. Roth & M. Utku Ünver, 2013. "Unraveling Results from Comparable Demand and Supply: An Experimental Investigation," Games, MDPI, vol. 4(2), pages 1-40, June.
    6. Shapiro, Joel & Josephson, Jens, 2008. "Interviews and Adverse Selection," CEPR Discussion Papers 6837, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    7. Wenjie Tang & J. Neil Bearden & Ilia Tsetlin, 2009. "Ultimatum Deadlines," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 55(8), pages 1423-1437, August.
    8. Garth Baughman, 2016. "Deadlines and Matching," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2016-14, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    9. Chen, Wei-Cheng & Chen, Yi-Yi & Kao, Yi-Cheng, 2018. "Limited choice in college admissions: An experimental study," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 295-316.
    10. Ettore Damiano & Hao Li & Wing Suen, 2005. "Unravelling of Dynamic Sorting," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 72(4), pages 1057-1076.
    11. Sandro Ambuehl & Vivienne Groves, 2017. "Unraveling Over Time," CESifo Working Paper Series 6739, CESifo.
    12. Siqi Pan, 2018. "Exploding offers and unraveling in two-sided matching markets," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer;Game Theory Society, vol. 47(1), pages 351-373, March.
    13. Pilli-Sihvola, Karoliina & Aatola, Piia & Ollikainen, Markku & Tuomenvirta, Heikki, 2010. "Climate change and electricity consumption--Witnessing increasing or decreasing use and costs?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(5), pages 2409-2419, May.

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