When are signals complements or substitutes?
The paper introduces a notion of complementarity (substitutability) of two signals which requires that in all decision problems each signal becomes more (less) valuable when the other signal becomes available. We provide a general characterization which relates complementarity and substitutability to a Blackwell-comparison of two auxiliary signals. In a special setting with a binary state space and binary, symmetric signals, we find an explicit characterization that permits an intuitive interpretation of complementarity and substitutability. We demonstrate how these conditions extend to the general case. Finally, we study implications of complementarity and substitutability for information acquisition and in a second price auction.
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Econometric Society, vol. 68(1), pages 135-148, January.
- Paul Milgrom & Robert J. Weber, 1981.
"The Value of Information in a Sealed-Bid Auction,"
462, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
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FMG Discussion Papers
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"Voting Behavior and Information Aggregation in Elections with Private Information,"
1117, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
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- Schmitz, Patrick W. & Tröger, Thomas, 2011.
"The (sub-)optimality of the majority rule,"
32716, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Dow, James & Gorton, Gary, 1993. "Trading, Communication and the Response of Asset Prices to News," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 103(418), pages 639-46, May.
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- Susan Athey & Jonathan Levin, 1998.
"The Value of Information In Monotone Decision Problems,"
98-24, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
- Jonathan Levin & Susan Athey, 2001. "The Value of Information in Monotone Decision Problems," Working Papers 01003, Stanford University, Department of Economics.
- Nicola Persico, 2004. "Committee Design with Endogenous Information," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 71(1), pages 165-191, 01.
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