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La recherche de rentes en situation d’incertitude avec ou sans opposition

  • Cairns, Robert D.

    (Centre d’étude des industries réglementées, Université McGiIl)

In this paper a stochastic model of rent-seeking equilibrium is examined. It is confirmed that social costs of rent seeking by risk-averse individuals are lower than the total of rents. Also, rent seeking harms other groups in society, and opposition by these groups is explicitly introduced into the analysis. Light is shed on some of the important questions of the theory of rent seeking, including (1) the relationship of total expenditures, total rents and total deadweight losses, (2) the response of opposition efforts to increases in total possible rents and (3) an apparent "disinterest in deregulation." One of the salient features of the analysis, however, is the ambiguity of several effects. This ambiguity may help to explain why the intuitively appealing notion of rent seeking has not provided definitive predictions of the characteristics of equilibrium. Les caractéristiques d’équilibre d’un modèle stochastique de la recherche de rentes sont rapportées et discutées. La proposition que les coûts sociaux de la recherche de rentes par des individus riscophobes sont inférieurs au total des rentes est d’abord confirmée. Le modèle de recherche de rentes avec rentes endogènes est ensuite élargi pour y inclure une opposition, créée par ceux que le processus désavantage. Diverses prédictions trouvées dans cette littérature sont qualifiées, incluant (1) la relation entre le total des efforts, le total des rentes et le total des pertes sociales, (2) l’impact d’une augmentation du total des rentes possibles sur l’effort de l’opposition, et (3) l’apparence de « désintérêt de la déréglementation ». Un aspect important de cette analyse est l’ambiguïté de plusieurs effets. Cette ambiguïté fournit une explication possible au fait que la théorie de la recherche de rentes n’a, jusqu’à date, fourni aucune prédiction définitive au sujet des caractéristiques de l’équilibre.

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Article provided by Société Canadienne de Science Economique in its journal L'Actualité économique.

Volume (Year): 68 (1992)
Issue (Month): 3 (septembre)
Pages: 477-498

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Handle: RePEc:ris:actuec:v:68:y:1992:i:3:p:477-498
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  1. Richard A. Posner, 1974. "Theories of Economic Regulation," NBER Working Papers 0041, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Posner, Richard A, 1975. "The Social Costs of Monopoly and Regulation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 83(4), pages 807-27, August.
  3. McCormick, Robert E & Shughart, William F, II & Tollison, Robert D, 1988. "The Disinterest in Deregulation: Reply," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(1), pages 284, March.
  4. Gordon Tullock, 1975. "The Transitional Gains Trap," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 6(2), pages 671-678, Autumn.
  5. Cherkes, Martin & Friedman, Joseph & Spivak, Avia, 1986. "The Disinterest in Deregulation: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(3), pages 559-63, June.
  6. McCormick, Robert E & Shughart, William F, II & Tollison, Robert D, 1984. "The Disinterest in Deregulation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(5), pages 1075-79, December.
  7. Elie Appelbaum & Eliakim Katz, 1986. "Transfer seeking and avoidance: On the full social costs of rent seeking," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 48(2), pages 175-181, January.
  8. Bhagwati, Jagdish N, 1982. "Directly Unproductive, Profit-seeking (DUP) Activities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(5), pages 988-1002, October.
  9. Wenders, John T, 1987. "On Perfect Rent Dissipation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(3), pages 456-59, June.
  10. Becker, Gary S, 1983. "A Theory of Competition among Pressure Groups for Political Influence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 98(3), pages 371-400, August.
  11. Eliakim Katz & J. Smith, 1988. "Rent-seeking and optimal regulation in replenishable resource industries," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 59(1), pages 25-36, October.
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