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Delegated bargaining in a competitive agent market: an experimental study

Listed author(s):
  • Amy K. Choy

    (Washington University)

  • John R. Hamman

    ()

    (Florida State University)

  • Ronald R. King

    (Washington University)

  • Roberto A. Weber

    (University of Zurich)

Abstract We examine a variant of ultimatum bargaining in which principals may delegate their proposal decision to agents hired from a competitive market. Contrary to several prior studies, we find that when principals must use agents, the resulting proposals are significantly higher than when principals make proposals themselves. In reconciling our results with prior findings, we conclude that both the rejection power afforded to responders and the structure of principal-agent contracts can play significant roles in the nature of outcomes under delegated bargaining.

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File URL: http://link.springer.com/10.1007/s40881-015-0015-1
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Article provided by Springer & Economic Science Association in its journal Journal of the Economic Science Association.

Volume (Year): 2 (2016)
Issue (Month): 1 (May)
Pages: 22-35

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Handle: RePEc:spr:jesaex:v:2:y:2016:i:1:d:10.1007_s40881-015-0015-1
DOI: 10.1007/s40881-015-0015-1
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  1. Kriss, Peter H. & Nagel, Rosemarie & Weber, Roberto A., 2013. "Implicit vs. explicit deception in ultimatum games with incomplete information," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 337-346.
  2. Regine Oexl & Zachary Grossman, 2013. "Shifting the blame to a powerless intermediary," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 16(3), pages 306-312, September.
  3. Schotter, Andrew & Zheng, Wei & Snyder, Blaine, 2000. "Bargaining Through Agents: An Experimental Study of Delegation and Commitment," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 248-292, February.
  4. Fershtman, Chaim & Gneezy, Uri, 2001. "Strategic Delegation: An Experiment," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 32(2), pages 352-368, Summer.
  5. Lucas C. Coffman, 2011. "Intermediation Reduces Punishment (and Reward)," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(4), pages 77-106, November.
  6. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
  7. McDonald, Ian M. & Nikiforakis, Nikos & Olekalns, Nilss & Sibly, Hugh, 2013. "Social comparisons and reference group formation: Some experimental evidence," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 79(C), pages 75-89.
  8. John R. Hamman & George Loewenstein & Roberto A. Weber, 2010. "Self-Interest through Delegation: An Additional Rationale for the Principal-Agent Relationship," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(4), pages 1826-1846, September.
  9. Björn Bartling & Urs Fischbacher, 2012. "Shifting the Blame: On Delegation and Responsibility," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 79(1), pages 67-87.
  10. Paul J. Healy & Yaron Azrieli & Christopher P. Chambers, 2016. "Incentives in Experiments: A Theoretical Analysis," Working Papers 16-03, Ohio State University, Department of Economics.
  11. Guth, Werner & Schmittberger, Rolf & Schwarze, Bernd, 1982. "An experimental analysis of ultimatum bargaining," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 367-388, December.
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