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Competition Fosters Trust

Author

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  • Huck, Steffen
  • Ruchala, Gabriele K.
  • Tyran, Jean-Robert

Abstract

We study the effects of reputation and competition in a stylized market for experience goods. If interaction is anonymous, such markets perform poorly: sellers are not trustworthy, and buyers do not trust sellers. If sellers are identifiable and can, hence, build a reputation, efficiency quadruples but is still at only a third of the first best. Adding more information by granting buyers access to all sellers’ complete history has, somewhat surprisingly, no effect. On the other hand, we find that competition, coupled with some minimal information, eliminates the trust problem almost completely.

Suggested Citation

  • Huck, Steffen & Ruchala, Gabriele K. & Tyran, Jean-Robert, 2006. "Competition Fosters Trust," CEPR Discussion Papers 6009, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:6009
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    competition; experience goods; information conditions; moral hazard; reputation; trust;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • D40 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - General
    • L14 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Transactional Relationships; Contracts and Reputation

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