The trade-off between incentives and endogenous risk
Standard models of moral hazard predict a negative relationship between risk and incentives, but the empirical work has not confirmed this prediction. In this paper, we propose a model with adverse selection followed by moral hazard, where effort and the degree of risk aversion are private information of an agent who can control the mean and the variance of profits. For a given contract, more risk-averse agents supply more effort in risk reduction. If the marginal utility of incentives decreases with risk aversion, more risk-averse agents prefer lower-incentive contracts; thus, in the optimal contract, incentives are positively correlated with endogenous risk. In contrast, if risk aversion is high enough, the possibility of reduction in risk makes the marginal utility of incentives increasing in risk aversion and, in this case, risk and incentives are negatively related.
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- Araujo, Aloisio & Moreira, Humberto, 2010.
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- Araújo, Aloísio Pessoa de & Moreira, Humberto Ataíde, 2001. "Adverse selection problems without the spence-mirrlees condition," Economics Working Papers (Ensaios Economicos da EPGE) 425, FGV/EPGE Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).
- Aloisio Araújo & Humberto Moreira, 2000. "Adverse selection problems without the Spence-Mirrlees condition," Textos para discussão 424, Department of Economics PUC-Rio (Brazil).
- Araújo, Aloísio Pessoa de & Moreira, Humberto Ataíde, 2000. "Adverse selection problems without the Spence-Mirrlees condition," Economics Working Papers (Ensaios Economicos da EPGE) 389, FGV/EPGE Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).
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