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Should the Same Side of the Market Always Move First in a Transaction?. An Experimental Study

  • Eline van der Heijden
  • Jan H.M. Nelissen
  • Harrie A.A. Verbon

We investigate whether transactions where the buyer (or seller) always moves first and the seller (or buyer) always moves second in the exchange give higher payoffs than transactions in which it is randomly determined who moves first. We examine the effect of two treatment variables: partners versus strangers, and fixed versus changing positions. We find that both with fixed and with changing positions, second movers take advantage of their position by exploiting the first mover. But with fixed positions, exploitation occurs significantly less, while reciprocal exchanges happen more often. However, fixed positions result in very unevenly distributed payoffs.

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Article provided by Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen in its journal Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics.

Volume (Year): 158 (2002)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
Pages: 344-

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Handle: RePEc:mhr:jinste:urn:sici:0932-4569(200206)158:2_344:stssot_2.0.tx_2-k
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  1. Fehr, Ernst & Schmidt, Klaus M., . "A theory of fairness, competition, and cooperation," Chapters in Economics, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  2. Georg Kirchsteiger & Ernst Fehr & Arno Riedl, 1993. "Does Fairness Prevent Market Clearing? An Experimental Investigation," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/5927, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
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  6. Van der Heijden, Eline C. M. & Nelissen, Jan H. M. & Potters, Jan J. M. & Verbon, Harrie A. A., 1998. "The poverty game and the pension game: The role of reciprocity," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 19(1), pages 5-41, February.
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