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Investment and Screening Under Asymmetric Endogenous Information


  • Patrick Gonzàlez

    () (GREEN, CRDE, CIRANO, and Université Laval)


This article provides an analysis of screening contracts in a complete but imperfect information environment as opposed to the usual incomplete information (Bayesian) environment. An agent faces a hold-up situation while making a cost-reducing specific investment that is not observed by the principal. To prevent the hold-up, the agent randomizes his investment strategy and the principal offers a screening contract. The informational rents provided by the equilibrium contract finance the investment. For a large class of cost functions, the randomization is such that the marginal surplus follows a Power distribution.

Suggested Citation

  • Patrick Gonzàlez, 2004. "Investment and Screening Under Asymmetric Endogenous Information," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 35(3), pages 502-519, Autumn.
  • Handle: RePEc:rje:randje:v:35:y:2004:3:p:502-519

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Spiros Bougheas, 2014. "Pooling, tranching, and credit expansion," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 66(2), pages 557-579.
    2. Kawai, Keiichi, 2015. "Reputation for quality and adverse selection," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 76(C), pages 47-59.
    3. Schmitz, Patrick W., 2012. "Public goods and the hold-up problem under asymmetric information," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 117(3), pages 642-645.
    4. Bougheas, Spiros & Worrall, Tim, 2012. "Cost padding in regulated monopolies," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 30(4), pages 331-341.
    5. Goldlücke, Susanne & Schmitz, Patrick W., 2014. "Investments as signals of outside options," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 150(C), pages 683-708.
    6. Jakub Kastl & David Martimort & Salvatore Piccolo, 2008. "Delegation and R&D Spending: Evidence from Italy," CSEF Working Papers 192, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy, revised 17 Oct 2009.
    7. Maria Goltsman, 2011. "Optimal information transmission in a holdup problem," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 42(3), pages 495-526, September.
    8. Ohlendorf, Susanne & Schmitz, Patrick, 2009. "Signaling an Outside Option," Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems 281, Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich.
    9. Alexander, Corinne & Ivanic, Rasto & Rosch, Stephanie & Tyner, Wallace & Wu, Steven Y. & Yoder, Joshua R., 2012. "Contract theory and implications for perennial energy crop contracting," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 970-979.
    10. Sloof, Randolph, 2008. "Price-setting power vs. private information: An experimental evaluation of their impact on holdup," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(3), pages 469-486, April.
    11. AGRELL, Per & KASPERZEC, Roman, 2010. "Dynamic joint investments in supply chains under information asymmetry," CORE Discussion Papers 2010085, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • L14 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Transactional Relationships; Contracts and Reputation
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design


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