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What Drives Taxi Drivers? A Field Experiment on Fraud in a Market for Credence Goods

  • Loukas Balafoutas
  • Adrian Beck
  • Rudolf Kerschbamer
  • Matthias Sutter

Credence goods are characterized by informational asymmetries between sellers and consumers that invite fraudulent behaviour by sellers. This article presents a natural field experiment on taxi rides in Athens, Greece, set up to measure different types of fraud and to examine the influence of passengers' presumed information and income on the extent of fraud. We find that passengers with inferior information about optimal routes are taken on significantly longer detours, while lack of information on the local tariff system increases the likelihood of manipulated bills by about fifteen percentage points. Passengers' perceived income seems to have no effect on fraud. Copyright 2013, Oxford University Press.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1093/restud/rds049
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Article provided by Oxford University Press in its journal Review of Economic Studies.

Volume (Year): 80 (2013)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 876-891

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Handle: RePEc:oup:restud:v:80:y:2013:i:3:p:876-891
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  1. Dulleck, Uwe & Kerschbamer, Rudolf & Sutter, Matthias, 2009. "The Economics of Credence Goods: On the Role of Liability, Verifiability, Reputation and Competition," IZA Discussion Papers 4030, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  5. Lorenz Goette & David Huffman & Stephan Meier, 2006. "The Impact of Group Membership on Cooperation and Norm Enforcement: Evidence Using Random Assignment to Real Social Groups," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 212-216, May.
  6. Gary Charness & Luca Rigotti & Aldo Rustichini, 2007. "Individual Behavior and Group Membership," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(4), pages 1340-1352, September.
  7. Darby, Michael R & Karni, Edi, 1973. "Free Competition and the Optimal Amount of Fraud," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 16(1), pages 67-88, April.
  8. List John A., 2007. "Field Experiments: A Bridge between Lab and Naturally Occurring Data," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 5(2), pages 1-47, April.
  9. Vincent P. Crawford & Juanjuan Meng, 2011. "New York City Cab Drivers' Labor Supply Revisited: Reference-Dependent Preferences with Rational-Expectations Targets for Hours and Income," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(5), pages 1912-32, August.
  10. Kerschbamer, Rudolf & Sutter, Matthias & Dulleck, Uwe, 2009. "The Impact of Distributional Preferences on (Experimental) Markets for Expert Services," IZA Discussion Papers 4647, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. Henry S. Schneider, 2012. "Agency Problems and Reputation in Expert Services: Evidence from Auto Repair," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(3), pages 406-433, 09.
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