Business corruption, uncertainty and risk aversion
The presence of business-corruption in a market provokes firms to make choices between legal business approaches and illegal bribery. The outcome of a chosen strategy will usually be uncertain at the time the decision is made, and a firm's decision will depend partly on its attitude towards risk. Drawing on the empirical data provided by a survey of 82 Norwegian exporting businesses, the paper proposes a theory about firm's choices between legal and illegal business practices. It begins by describing the risks, uncertainties and benefits attached to bribery, and specifies their impact on firm's propensity to offer bribes. It then demonstrates how risk averse firms can be more inclined to offer bribes than risk neutral, and even risk attracted firms. Although the analysis diverges from existing theory in stressing the differences between illegal and legal forms of rent-seeking, the findings correspond to the results reported in the literature on legal forms of rent-seeking. JEL D81, F23, K40
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