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Green with Envy: Implications for Corporate Investment Distortions

Author

Listed:
  • Anand M. Goel

    (DePaul University)

  • Anjan V. Thakor

    (Washington University, St. Louis)

Abstract

We model agents whose preferences exhibit envy. An envious agent's utility increases with what he has and decreases with what others have. With this setup, we are able to provide a new perspective on the nature of investment distortions with centralized and decentralized capital budgeting systems. Centralized capital budgeting leads to corporate socialism in investments in multidivisional firms, whereas decentralized capital budgeting leads to overinvestment. Numerous additional testable predictions are also generated.

Suggested Citation

  • Anand M. Goel & Anjan V. Thakor, 2005. "Green with Envy: Implications for Corporate Investment Distortions," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 78(6), pages 2255-2288, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jnlbus:v:78:y:2005:i:6:p:2255-2288
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/497049
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    Cited by:

    1. DeMarzo, Peter & Kaniel, Ron, 2016. "Relative Pay for Non-Relative Performance: Keeping up with the Joneses with Optimal Contracts," CEPR Discussion Papers 11538, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Suleyman Basak & Dmitry Makarov, 2014. "Strategic Asset Allocation in Money Management," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 69(1), pages 179-217, February.
    3. Fabio Maccheroni & Massimo Marinacci & Aldo Rustichini, 2012. "Social Decision Theory: Choosing within and between Groups," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 79(4), pages 1591-1636.
    4. Marjo Siltaoja & Merja Lähdesmäki, 2015. "From Rationality to Emotionally Embedded Relations: Envy as a Signal of Power in Stakeholder Relations," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 128(4), pages 837-850, June.
    5. Yuri Khoroshilov, 2012. "Incentive Contracts for Overoptimistic Managers," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 32(2), pages 1687-1694.

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