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Asset Ownership and Contractibility of Interaction

  • Andreas Roider

    ()

    (Stanford University)

In a property-rights framework, I study how organizational form and quantity contracts interact in generating investment incentives. The model nests standard property-rights and hold-up models as special cases. I admit general message-dependent contracts but provide conditions under which noncontingent contracts are optimal. First, the article contributes to the foundation of the property-rights theory: I characterize under which circumstances its predictions are correct when trade is contractible. Second, I study how the optimal use of the incentive instruments depends on the environment. Finally, the model offers a new perspective on the classic Fisher Body case and produces implications that are empirically testable.

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Article provided by The RAND Corporation in its journal RAND Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 35 (2004)
Issue (Month): 4 (Winter)
Pages: 787-802

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Handle: RePEc:rje:randje:v:35:y:2004:4:p:787-802
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  1. Georg Nöldeke & Klaus M. Schmidt, 1992. "Option Contracts and Renegotiation - A Solution to the Hold-Up Problem," Discussion Paper Serie A 417, University of Bonn, Germany, revised Aug 1993.
  2. Holmstrom, Bengt & Tirole, Jean, 1991. "Transfer Pricing and Organizational Form," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(2), pages 201-28, Fall.
  3. Michael D. Whinston, 2003. "On the Transaction Cost Determinants of Vertical Integration," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(1), pages 1-23, April.
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  5. Chiu, Y Stephen, 1998. "Noncooperative Bargaining, Hostages, and Optimal Asset Ownership," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(4), pages 882-901, September.
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  7. Oliver Hart & John Moore, 1998. "Foundations of Incomplete Contracts," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1846, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  8. Ilya Segal & Michael D. Whinston, 2000. "Exclusive Contracts and Protection of Investments," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 31(4), pages 603-633, Winter.
  9. Stephanie Rosenkranz & Patrick W. Schmitz, 2004. "Joint Ownership And Incomplete Contracts: The Case Of Perfectly Substitutable Investments," Schmalenbach Business Review (sbr), LMU Munich School of Management, vol. 56(1), pages 72-89, January.
  10. Rosenkranz, Stephanie & Schmitz, Patrick W., 1999. "Know-how disclosure and incomplete contracts," MPRA Paper 12533, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  11. Aghion, Philippe & Dewatripont, Mathias & Rey, Patrick, 1994. "Renegotiation Design with Unverifiable Information," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 62(2), pages 257-82, March.
  12. Bengt Holmstrom & John Roberts, 1998. "The Boundaries of the Firm Revisited," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 12(4), pages 73-94, Fall.
  13. Grossman, Sanford J & Hart, Oliver, 1985. "The Cost and Benefits of Ownership: A Theory of Vertical and Lateral Integration," CEPR Discussion Papers 70, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. George Baker & Robert Gibbons & Kevin J. Murphy, 2002. "Relational Contracts And The Theory Of The Firm," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(1), pages 39-84, February.
  15. Hart, Oliver D. & Moore, John, 1990. "Property Rights and the Nature of the Firm," Scholarly Articles 3448675, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  16. Guriev Sergei, 2003. "Incomplete Contracts with Cross-Investments," The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 3(1), pages 1-32, August.
  17. Holmstrom, Bengt & Milgrom, Paul, 1994. "The Firm as an Incentive System," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(4), pages 972-91, September.
  18. Eric Maskin & John Moore, 1999. "Implementation and Renegotiation," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1863, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  19. Nöldeke, Georg & Schmidt, Klaus M., 1998. "Sequential investments and options to own," Munich Reprints in Economics 19327, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  20. Bernheim, B Douglas & Whinston, Michael D, 1998. "Incomplete Contracts and Strategic Ambiguity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(4), pages 902-32, September.
  21. George Baker & Thomas N. Hubbard, 2001. "Empirical Strategies in Contract Economics: Information and the Boundary of the Firm," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 189-194, May.
  22. Chung, Tai-Yeong, 1991. "Incomplete Contracts, Specific Investments, and Risk Sharing," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(5), pages 1031-42, October.
  23. Holmstrom, Bengt, 1999. "The Firm as a Subeconomy," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(1), pages 74-102, April.
  24. Edlin, Aaron S & Hermalin, Benjamin E, 2000. "Contract Renegotiation and Options in Agency Problems," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 16(2), pages 395-423, October.
  25. Segal, Ilya, 1999. "Complexity and Renegotiation: A Foundation for Incomplete Contracts," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 66(1), pages 57-82, January.
  26. Holmstrom, Bengt & Milgrom, Paul, 1991. "Multitask Principal-Agent Analyses: Incentive Contracts, Asset Ownership, and Job Design," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(0), pages 24-52, Special I.
  27. Cai, Hongbin, 2003. " A Theory of Joint Asset Ownership," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 34(1), pages 63-77, Spring.
  28. Maskin, Eric & Tirole, Jean, 1999. "Two Remarks on the Property-Rights Literature," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 66(1), pages 139-49, January.
  29. David De Meza & Ben Lockwood, 1998. "Does Asset Ownership Always Motivate Managers? Outside Options And The Property Rights Theory Of The Firm," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 113(2), pages 361-386, May.
  30. Klein, Benjamin, 2000. "Fisher-General Motors and the Nature of the Firm," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 43(1), pages 105-41, April.
  31. Elfenbein, Daniel W & Lerner, Josh, 2003. " Ownership and Control Rights in Internet Portal Alliances, 1995-1999," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 34(2), pages 356-69, Summer.
  32. Ilya Segal & Michael D. Whinston, 2002. "The Mirrlees Approach to Mechanism Design with Renegotiation (with Applications to Hold-up and Risk Sharing)," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(1), pages 1-45, January.
  33. MacLeod, W Bentley & Malcomson, James M, 1993. "Investments, Holdup, and the Form of Market Contracts," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(4), pages 811-37, September.
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