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How sensitive are bargaining outcomes to changes in disagreement payoffs?

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  • Nejat Anbarci

    ()

  • Nick Feltovich

    ()

Abstract

We use a human-subjects experiment to investigate how bargaining outcomes are affected by changes in bargainers’ disagreement payoffs. Subjects bargain against changing opponents, with randomly drawn asymmetric disagreement outcomes that vary over plays of the game, and with complete information about disagreement payoffs and the cake size. We find that subjects only respond about half as much as theoretically predicted to changes in their own disagreement payoff and to changes in their opponent’s disagreement payoff. This effect is observed in a standard Nash demand game and a related unstructured bargaining game, in both early and late rounds, and is robust to moderate changes in stake sizes. We show theoretically that standard models of expected utility maximisation are unable to account for this under-responsiveness, even when generalised to allow for risk aversion. We also show that quantal-response equilibrium has, at best, mixed success in characterising our results. However, a simple model of other-regarding preferences can explain our main results. Copyright Economic Science Association 2013

Suggested Citation

  • Nejat Anbarci & Nick Feltovich, 2013. "How sensitive are bargaining outcomes to changes in disagreement payoffs?," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 16(4), pages 560-596, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:expeco:v:16:y:2013:i:4:p:560-596
    DOI: 10.1007/s10683-013-9352-1
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    3. Herbst, Luisa & Konrad, Kai A. & Morath, Florian, 2017. "Balance of power and the propensity of conflict," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 103(C), pages 168-184.
    4. Luhan, Wolfgang J. & Poulsen, Anders U. & Roos, Michael W.M., 2017. "Real-time tacit bargaining, payoff focality, and coordination complexity: Experimental evidence," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 102(C), pages 687-699.
    5. Fabio Galeotti & Maria Montero & Anders Poulsen, 2015. "Efficiency versus equality in real-time bargaining with communication," Working Paper series, University of East Anglia, Centre for Behavioural and Experimental Social Science (CBESS) 15-18, School of Economics, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK..
    6. Emin Karagözoglu & Martin G. Kocher, 2015. "Bargaining under Time Pressure," CESifo Working Paper Series 5685, CESifo Group Munich.
    7. Federica Alberti & Sven Fischer & Werner Güth & Kei Tsutsui, 2013. "Concession Bargaining - An Experimental Comparison of Protocols and Time Horizons," Jena Economic Research Papers 2013-052, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
    8. Rodriguez-Lara, Ismael, 2016. "Equity and bargaining power in ultimatum games," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 130(C), pages 144-165.
    9. Dufwenberg, Martin & Servátka, Maroš & Vadovič, Radovan, 2017. "Honesty and informal agreements," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 102(C), pages 269-285.
    10. Fabio Galeotti & Maria Montero & Anders Poulsen, 2015. "Efficiency versus Equality in Bargaining," Discussion Papers 2015-18, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.
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    12. Anbarci, Nejat & Feltovich, Nick, 2018. "How fully do people exploit their bargaining position? The effects of bargaining institution and the 50–50 norm," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 145(C), pages 320-334.
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    15. Nejat Anbarci & Nick Feltovich, 2013. "How responsive are people to changes in their bargaining position? Earned bargaining power and the 50–50 norm," EcoMod2013 5855, EcoMod.
    16. Friedel Bolle & Philipp E. Otto, 2016. "Role-dependent Social Preferences," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 83(332), pages 704-740, October.
    17. Tremewan, James & Vanberg, Christoph, 2016. "The dynamics of coalition formation – A multilateral bargaining experiment with free timing of moves," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 130(C), pages 33-46.
    18. Bolton, Gary E. & Karagözoğlu, Emin, 2016. "On the influence of hard leverage in a soft leverage bargaining game: The importance of credible claims," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 99(C), pages 164-179.
    19. Hodaka Morita & Maroš Servátka, 2014. "Investment in Outside Options as Opportunistic Behavior: An Experimental Investigation," Working Papers in Economics 14/31, University of Canterbury, Department of Economics and Finance.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Nash demand game; Unstructured bargaining; Disagreement; Experiment; Risk aversion; Social preference; Other-regarding behaviour; Bargaining power; C78; C72; D81; D74;

    JEL classification:

    • C78 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Bargaining Theory; Matching Theory
    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions

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