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Investment and Competitive Matching

Listed author(s):
  • Georg Nöldeke
  • Larry Samuelson

We study markets in which agents first make investments and are then matched into potentially productive partnerships. Equilibrium investments and the equilibrium matching will be efficient if agents can simultaneously negotiate investments and matches, but we focus on markets in which agents must first sink their investments before matching. Additional equilibria may arise in this sunk‐investment setting, even though our matching market is competitive. These equilibria exhibit inefficiencies that we can interpret as coordination failures. All allocations satisfying a constrained efficiency property are equilibria, and the converse holds if preferences satisfy a separability condition. We identify sufficient conditions (most notably, quasiconcave utilities) for the investments of matched agents to satisfy an exchange efficiency property as well as sufficient conditions (most notably, a single crossing property) for agents to be matched positive assortatively, with these conditions then forming the core of sufficient conditions for the efficiency of equilibrium allocations.

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Article provided by Econometric Society in its journal Econometrica.

Volume (Year): 83 (2015)
Issue (Month): 3 (05)
Pages: 835-896

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Handle: RePEc:wly:emetrp:v:83:y:2015:i:3:p:835-896
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  1. Patrick Legros & Andrew F. Newman, 2007. "Beauty Is a Beast, Frog Is a Prince: Assortative Matching with Nontransferabilities," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 75(4), pages 1073-1102, 07.
  2. V. Bhaskar & Ed Hopkins, 2016. "Marriage as a Rat Race: Noisy Premarital Investments with Assortative Matching," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 124(4), pages 992-1045.
  3. Peters, Michael, 2007. "The pre-marital investment game," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 137(1), pages 186-213, November.
  4. Bidner, Chris, 2010. "Pre-match investment with frictions," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 23-34, January.
  5. Kaneko, Mamoru & Wooders, Myrna Holtz, 1996. "The Nonemptiness of the f-Core of a Game without Side Payments," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer;Game Theory Society, vol. 25(2), pages 245-258.
  6. H. S. Houthakker, 1952. "Compensated Changes in Quantities and Qualities Consumed," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(3), pages 155-164.
  7. Michael Peters & Aloysius Siow, 2002. "Competing Premarital Investments," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(3), pages 592-608, June.
  8. Kelvin J. Lancaster, 1966. "A New Approach to Consumer Theory," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 74, pages 132-132.
  9. Goldman, Steven M & Starr, Ross M, 1982. "Pairwise, t-Wise, and Pareto Optimalities," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(3), pages 593-606, May.
  10. Hadfield, Gillian K., 1999. "A coordination model of the sexual division of labor," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 40(2), pages 125-153, October.
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