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Corruption and Product Market Competition

It is generally considered that more competition might help curb corruption, as rents, which motivate corrupt agreements, are decreasing in the degree of competition. This paper proposes a framework to analyze the relationship between corruption and competition. It studies the optimal incentive scheme for potentially corrupt officials in charge of inspecting firms that compete in the product market. Given that bribe-taking is sometimes tolerated in equilibrium, for specific values of the externality that motivated regulatory intervention, nonmonotonic effects arise and more competition may lead to an increase in corruption. Moreover, it is shown that in this context competition is always welfare improving, even though it might lead to more corruption.

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File URL: http://www.econ.ed.ac.uk/papers/corruption_competition.pdf
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Paper provided by Edinburgh School of Economics, University of Edinburgh in its series ESE Discussion Papers with number 131.

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Length: 34
Date of creation: Mar 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:edn:esedps:131
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  1. Mookherjee, Dilip & Png, I P L, 1995. "Corruptible Law Enforcers: How Should They Be Compensated?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 105(428), pages 145-59, January.
  2. Toke S. Aidt, 2003. "Economic analysis of corruption: a survey," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(491), pages F632-F652, November.
  3. Pranab Bardhan, 1997. "Corruption and Development: A Review of Issues," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(3), pages 1320-1346, September.
  4. Rafael Di Tella & Alberto Ades, 1999. "Rents, Competition, and Corruption," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(4), pages 982-993, September.
  5. Ades, Alberto & Di Tella, Rafael, 1997. "National Champions and Corruption: Some Unpleasant Interventionist Arithmetic," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(443), pages 1023-42, July.
  6. Thierry Verdier & Daron Acemoglu, 2000. "The Choice between Market Failures and Corruption," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(1), pages 194-211, March.
  7. Laffont, Jean-Jacques & Tirole, Jean, 1991. "The Politics of Government Decision-Making: A Theory of Regulatory Capture," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(4), pages 1089-127, November.
  8. Bhagwati, Jagdish N, 1982. "Directly Unproductive, Profit-seeking (DUP) Activities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(5), pages 988-1002, October.
  9. Besley, Timothy & McLaren, John, 1993. "Taxes and Bribery: The Role of Wage Incentives," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 103(416), pages 119-41, January.
  10. Laffont, Jean-Jacques & N'Guessan, Tchetche, 1999. "Competition and corruption in an agency relationship," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 271-295, December.
  11. Bliss, Christopher & Di Tella, Rafael, 1997. "Does Competition Kill Corruption?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(5), pages 1001-23, October.
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