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To Each According To...? Markets, Tournaments, and the Matching Problem with Borrowing Constraints

  • Fernández, Raquel
  • Galí, Jordi

We compare the performance of markets and tournaments as allocative mechanisms in an economy with borrowing constraints. The model consists of a continuum of individuals who differ in their initial wealth and ability level (e.g. students) and that are to be assigned to a continuum of investment opportunities or inputs of different productivity (e.g. schools of different qualities). With perfect capital markets both mechanisms achieve the efficient allocation, though markets generate higher aggregate consumption because of the waste associated with the production of signals under tournaments. When borrowing constraints are present, however, tournaments dominate markets in terms of aggregate output and, for sufficiently powerful signalling technologies, also in terms of aggregate consumption.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 1627.

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Date of creation: May 1997
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:1627
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  1. Jerry R. Green & Nancy L. Stokey, 1982. "A Comparison of Tournaments and Contracts," NBER Working Papers 0840, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  6. Banerjee, Abhijit V & Newman, Andrew F, 1993. "Occupational Choice and the Process of Development," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(2), pages 274-98, April.
  7. Fernandez, Raquel & Rogerson, Richard, 1998. "Public Education and Income Distribution: A Dynamic Quantitative Evaluation of Education-Finance Reform," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(4), pages 813-33, September.
  8. Burdett, Ken & Coles, Melvyn G, 1997. "Marriage and Class," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(1), pages 141-68, February.
  9. Becker, Gary S, 1973. "A Theory of Marriage: Part I," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(4), pages 813-46, July-Aug..
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