IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/cpr/ceprdp/2152.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Campaign Advertising and Voter Welfare

Author

Listed:
  • Prat, Andrea

Abstract

This paper investigates the role of campaign advertising and the opportunity of legal restrictions on it. An electoral race is modeled as a signalling game with three classes of players: a continuum of voters, two candidates, and one interest group. The group has non-verifiable insider information on the candidates' valence and, on the basis of this information, offers a contribution to each candidate in exchange for a favorable policy position. Candidates spend the contributions they receive on non-directly informative advertising. This paper shows that: (1) A separating equilibrium exists in which the group contributes to a candidate only if the insider information about that candidate is positive; (2) Although voters are fully rational, a ban on campaign advertising can be welfare-improving; and (3) Split contributions may arise in equilibrium (and should be prohibited).

Suggested Citation

  • Prat, Andrea, 1999. "Campaign Advertising and Voter Welfare," CEPR Discussion Papers 2152, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2152
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=2152
    Download Restriction: CEPR Discussion Papers are free to download for our researchers, subscribers and members. If you fall into one of these categories but have trouble downloading our papers, please contact us at subscribers@cepr.org
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Gary S. Becker & Kevin M. Murphy, 1993. "A Simple Theory of Advertising as a Good or Bad," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 108(4), pages 941-964.
    2. Timothy Feddersen & Wolfgang Pesendorfer, 1997. "Voting Behavior and Information Aggregation in Elections with Private Information," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(5), pages 1029-1058, September.
    3. Avinash Dixit & Victor Norman, 1978. "Advertising and Welfare," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 9(1), pages 1-17, Spring.
    4. Potters, Jan & Sloof, Randolph & van Winden, Frans, 1997. "Campaign expenditures, contributions and direct endorsements: The strategic use of information and money to influence voter behavior," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 1-31, February.
    5. Elhanan Helpman & Gene M. Grossman, 1999. "Competing for Endorsements," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 501-524, June.
    6. Lohmann, Susanne, 1994. "Information Aggregation through Costly Political Action," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 518-530, June.
    7. Milgrom, Paul & Roberts, John, 1986. "Price and Advertising Signals of Product Quality," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(4), pages 796-821, August.
    8. Kyle Bagwell & Garey Ramey, 1994. "Advertising and Coordination," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(1), pages 153-171.
    9. In-Koo Cho & David M. Kreps, 1987. "Signaling Games and Stable Equilibria," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 102(2), pages 179-221.
    10. Lopez, Rigoberto A & Pagoulatos, Emilio, 1996. "Trade Protection and the Role of Campaign Contributions in U.S. Food and Tobacco Industries," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 34(2), pages 237-248, April.
    11. Baron, David P., 1994. "Electoral Competition with Informed and Uninformed Voters," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 88(1), pages 33-47, March.
    12. Cukierman, Alex, 1991. "Asymmetric Information and the Electoral Momentum of Public Opinion Polls," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 70(2), pages 181-213, May.
    13. Franklin M. Fisher & John J. McGowan, 1979. "Advertising and Welfare: Comment," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 10(2), pages 726-727, Autumn.
    14. Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 1996. "Electoral Competition and Special Interest Politics," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 63(2), pages 265-286.
    15. Paul R. Milgrom, 1981. "Good News and Bad News: Representation Theorems and Applications," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 12(2), pages 380-391, Autumn.
    16. Jean Tirole, 1988. "The Theory of Industrial Organization," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262200716.
    17. Gary S. Becker & Kevin M. Murphy, 1990. "A Simple Theory of Advertising as a Good," University of Chicago - George G. Stigler Center for Study of Economy and State 58, Chicago - Center for Study of Economy and State.
    18. Kihlstrom, Richard E & Riordan, Michael H, 1984. "Advertising as a Signal," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 92(3), pages 427-450, June.
    19. Mailath George J. & Okuno-Fujiwara Masahiro & Postlewaite Andrew, 1993. "Belief-Based Refinements in Signalling Games," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 241-276, August.
    20. Rebecca Morton & Charles Cameron, 1992. "Elections And The Theory Of Campaign Contributions: A Survey And Critical Analysis," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 4(1), pages 79-108, March.
    21. Jean-Jacques Laffont & Jean Tirole, 1993. "A Theory of Incentives in Procurement and Regulation," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262121743.
    22. Bagwell, Kyle & Ramey, Garey, 1994. "Coordination Economies, Advertising, and Search Behavior in Retail Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 498-517, June.
    23. David Austen-Smith, 1987. "Interest groups, campaign contributions, and probabilistic voting," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 54(2), pages 123-139, January.
    24. Austen-Smith, David, 1995. "Campaign Contributions and Access," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 89(3), pages 566-581, September.
    25. Mark N. Hertzendorf, 1993. "I'm Not a High-Quality Firm -- But I Play One on TV," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 24(2), pages 236-247, Summer.
    26. Gerard R. Butters, 1977. "Equilibrium Distributions of Sales and Advertising Prices," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 44(3), pages 465-491.
    27. David P. Baron, 1989. "Service-Induced Campaign Contributions and the Electoral Equilibrium," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 104(1), pages 45-72.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Prat, Andrea, 2002. "Campaign Spending with Office-Seeking Politicians, Rational Voters, and Multiple Lobbies," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 103(1), pages 162-189, March.
    2. Nils‐Henrik M. von der Fehr & Kristin Stevik, 1998. "Persuasive Advertising and Product Differentiation," Southern Economic Journal, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 65(1), pages 113-126, July.
    3. Nick Vikander, 2011. "Targeted Advertising and Social Status," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 11-016/1, Tinbergen Institute.
    4. Belleflamme,Paul & Peitz,Martin, 2015. "Industrial Organization," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9781107687899.
    5. Potters, Jan & Sloof, Randolph & van Winden, Frans, 1997. "Campaign expenditures, contributions and direct endorsements: The strategic use of information and money to influence voter behavior," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 1-31, February.
    6. Ulrich Doraszelski & Sarit Markovich, 2007. "Advertising dynamics and competitive advantage," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 38(3), pages 557-592, September.
    7. McCarthy, Ian M., 2016. "Advertising intensity and welfare in an equilibrium search model," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 141(C), pages 20-26.
    8. Lola Esteban & José M. Hernández & José Luis Moraga‐González, 2006. "Customer Directed Advertising and Product Quality," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(4), pages 943-968, December.
    9. Salvatore Piccolo & Piero Tedeschi & Giovanni Ursino, 2018. "Deceptive Advertising with Rational Buyers," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 64(3), pages 1291-1310, March.
    10. Oskar Nupia & Francisco Eslava, 2022. "Campaign finance and welfare when contributions are spent on mobilizing voters," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 58(3), pages 589-618, April.
    11. Moraga-Gonzalez, Jose Luis, 2000. "Quality uncertainty and informative advertising," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 18(4), pages 615-640, May.
    12. Simon P. Anderson & Régis Renault, 2006. "Advertising Content," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(1), pages 93-113, March.
    13. Stephen Coate, 2003. "Power-hungry Candidates, Policy Favors, and Pareto Improving Campaign Finance Policy," NBER Working Papers 9601, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Reuben E., 2002. "Interest groups and politics: The need to concentrate on group formation," Public Economics 0212001, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    15. Soberman, David A. & Xiang, Yi, 2022. "Designing the content of advertising in a differentiated market," International Journal of Research in Marketing, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 190-211.
    16. Christou, C. & Vettas, N., 2008. "On informative advertising and product differentiation," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 92-112, January.
    17. Régis Chenavaz & Sajjad M. Jasimuddin, 2017. "An analytical model of the relationship between product quality and advertising," Post-Print hal-01685892, HAL.
    18. David Genesove & Avi Simhon, 2015. "Seasonality and the Effect of Advertising on Price," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 63(1), pages 199-222, March.
    19. Bharat Anand & Ron Shachar, 2009. "Targeted advertising as a signal," Quantitative Marketing and Economics (QME), Springer, vol. 7(3), pages 237-266, September.
    20. Ulrich Doraszelski & Sarit Markovich, 2004. "Advertising Dynamics and Competitive Advantage," Computing in Economics and Finance 2004 61, Society for Computational Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Advertising; Campaign Contributions; Elections; Split Contributions; Voter Welfare;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • M37 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Marketing and Advertising - - - Advertising

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2152. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://www.cepr.org .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://www.cepr.org .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.