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Firm Size, Economic Situation and Influence Activities

  • Matthias Kräkel


This paper discusses the optimal firm size in the presence of influence activities, and the level of individual rent-seeking dependent on the economic situation of the firm. Since size has a discouraging effect on the level of individual rent-seeking but also a quantity effect as the number of rent-seekers increases, the interplay of both effects determines whether the employer chooses an inefficiently small or large firm size. In the given setting, a bad economic situation leads to both a higher probability of a substantial loss and a reduction of productivity. The productivity effect and the two other effects together determine the optimal level of individual rent-seeking.

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Paper provided by University of Bonn, Germany in its series Bonn Econ Discussion Papers with number bgse16_2006.

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Length: 25
Date of creation: Sep 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bon:bonedp:bgse16_2006
Contact details of provider: Postal: Bonn Graduate School of Economics, University of Bonn, Adenauerallee 24 - 26, 53113 Bonn, Germany
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  1. Konrad, Kai A, 2000. "Sabotage in Rent-Seeking Contests," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 16(1), pages 155-65, April.
  2. Baron, David P. & Besanko, David, 1984. "Regulation and information in a continuing relationship," Information Economics and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 1(3), pages 267-302.
  3. Fairburn, James A. & Malcomson, James M., 1994. "Rewarding performance by promotion to a different job," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(3-4), pages 683-690, April.
  4. Prendergast, Canice, 1993. "A Theory of "Yes Men."," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(4), pages 757-70, September.
  5. Ewerhart, Christian & Schmitz, Patrick W., 2000. ""Yes Men," Integrity, and the Optimal Design of Incentive Contracts," MPRA Paper 12534, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. Lazear, Edward P, 1989. "Pay Equality and Industrial Politics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(3), pages 561-80, June.
  7. Roman Inderst & Holger Müller & Karl Wärneryd, 2005. "Influence costs and hierarchy," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 6(2), pages 177-197, 07.
  8. Inderst, Roman & Mueller, Holger M & Wärneryd, Karl, 2002. "Distributional Conflict in Organisations," CEPR Discussion Papers 3315, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. 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.
  10. Konrad, Kai A., 2003. "Bidding in hierarchies
    [Das Bieten in Hierarchien]
    ," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Market Processes and Governance SP II 2003-27, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
  11. Scott Schaefer, 1998. "Influence Costs, Structural Inertia, and Organizational Change," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 7(2), pages 237-263, 06.
  12. David S. Scharfstein & Jeremy C. Stein, 2000. "The Dark Side of Internal Capital Markets: Divisional Rent-Seeking and Inefficient Investment," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(6), pages 2537-2564, December.
  13. Bagwell, Laurie Simon & Zechner, Josef, 1993. " Influence Costs and Capital Structure," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 48(3), pages 975-1008, July.
  14. Gibbons, Robert, 2005. "Four forma(lizable) theories of the firm?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 200-245, October.
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