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"It Is Never too late": Optimal Penalty for Investment Delay in Public Procurement Contracts

Author

Listed:
  • Sergio Vergalli

    (University of Brescia and FEEM)

  • Chiara D’Alpaos

    (DIMEG, Univ. of Padova)

  • Michele Moretto

    (Univ. of Padova and FEEM)

  • Paola Valbonesi

    (Univ. of Padova)

Abstract

We provide a general framework in which to determine the optimal penalty fee inducing the contractor to respect the contracted delivery date in public procurement contracts (PPCs). We do this by developing a real option model that enables us to investigate the contractor’s value of investment timing flexibility which the penalty rule - de facto - introduces. We then apply this setting in order to evaluate the range of penalty fees in the Italian legislation on PPCs. According to our calibration analysis, there is no evidence that the substantial delays recorded in the execution times of Italian PPCs are due to incorrectly set penalty fees. This result opens the way for other explanations of delays in Italian PPCs: specifically, we extend our model to investigate the probability of enforcing a penalty which we assume negatively affected by the "quality" of the judicial system and the discretionality of the court in voiding the rule. Our simulations show that the penalty fee is highly sensitive to the "quality" of the judicial system. Specifically referring to the Italian case, we show that the optimal penalty should be higher than those set according to the present Italian law.

Suggested Citation

  • Sergio Vergalli & Chiara D’Alpaos & Michele Moretto & Paola Valbonesi, 2009. ""It Is Never too late": Optimal Penalty for Investment Delay in Public Procurement Contracts," Working Papers 2009.78, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  • Handle: RePEc:fem:femwpa:2009.78
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Martin Meier & Enrico Minelli & Herakles Polemarchakis, 2014. "Competitive markets with private information on both sides," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 55(2), pages 257-280, February.
    2. Monica Billio & Roberto Casarin, 2010. "Bayesian Estimation of Stochastic-Transition Markov-Switching Models for Business Cycle Analysis," Working Papers 1002, University of Brescia, Department of Economics.
    3. Cesare Dosi & Michele Moretto, 2015. "Procurement with Unenforceable Contract Time and the Law of Liquidated Damages," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 31(1), pages 160-186.
    4. Rosella Levaggi & Francesco Menoncin, 2009. "Decentralized provision of merit and impure public goods," Working Papers 0909, University of Brescia, Department of Economics.
    5. Bisin, A. & Geanakoplos, J.D. & Gottardi, P. & Minelli, E. & Polemarchakis, H., 2011. "Markets and contracts," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(3), pages 279-288.
    6. Francesco Menoncin & Paolo Panteghini, 2009. "Retrospective Capital Gains Taxation in the Real World," CESifo Working Paper Series 2674, CESifo Group Munich.
    7. Del Boca, Alessandra & Fratianni, Michele & Spinelli, Franco & Trecroci, Carmine, 2010. "The Phillips curve and the Italian lira, 1861-1998," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 182-197, August.
    8. Alessandro Fedele & Paolo M. Panteghini & Sergio Vergalli, 2011. "Optimal Investment and Financial Strategies under Tax‐Rate Uncertainty," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 12(4), pages 438-468, November.
    9. Alessandro Fedele & Raffaele Miniaci, 2010. "Do Social Enterprises Finance Their Investments Differently from For-profit Firms? The Case of Social Residential Services in Italy," Journal of Social Entrepreneurship, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 1(2), pages 174-189, October.
    10. Alessandro Fedele & Francesco Liucci & Andrea Mantovani, 2009. "Credit availability in the crisis: the European investment bank group," Working Papers 0913, University of Brescia, Department of Economics.
    11. Chiara D’Alpaos & Michele Moretto & Paola Valbonesi & Sergio Vergalli, 2013. "Time overruns as opportunistic behavior in public procurement," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 110(1), pages 25-43, September.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Public Procurement Contracts; Penalty Fee; Investment Timing Flexibility; Contract Incompleteness; Enforceability of Rules;

    JEL classification:

    • L33 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise - - - Comparison of Public and Private Enterprise and Nonprofit Institutions; Privatization; Contracting Out
    • H57 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Procurement
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty

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