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Performance pay and adverse selection

Author

Listed:
  • Moen, Espen R.

    () (Norwegian School of Management (BI))

  • Rosén, Åsa

    () (Swedish Institute for Social Research, Stockholm University)

Abstract

We study equilibrium wage contracts in a labour market with adverse selection and moral hazard. Firms offer incentive contracts to their employees to motivate them to exert effort. Providing incentives comes, however, at a cost, as it leads to misallocation of effort across tasks. With ex ante identical workers, the optimal wage contract is linear, and the equilibrium resource allocation optimal. With ex ante heterogenous workers, firms may increase the incentive power of the wage contract to attract the better workers. The resulting equilibrium is separating, in the sense that workers self-select on contracts. Furthermore, the contracts offered to the good workers are too high powered compared to the contracts that maximise welfare.

Suggested Citation

  • Moen, Espen R. & Rosén, Åsa, 2001. "Performance pay and adverse selection," Working Paper Series 2/2001, Stockholm University, Swedish Institute for Social Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:sofiwp:2001_002
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Holmstrom, Bengt & Milgrom, Paul, 1991. "Multitask Principal-Agent Analyses: Incentive Contracts, Asset Ownership, and Job Design," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(0), pages 24-52, Special I.
    2. Oliver Hart & Bengt Holmstrom, 1986. "The Theory of Contracts," Working papers 418, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
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    Cited by:

    1. Josse Delfgaauw & Robert Dur, 2008. "Incentives and Workers' Motivation in the Public Sector," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(525), pages 171-191, January.
    2. Cornelissen, Thomas & Heywood, John S. & Jirjahn, Uwe, 2011. "Performance pay, risk attitudes and job satisfaction," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 229-239, April.
    3. Bannier, Christina E. & Feess, Eberhard & Packham, Natalie, 2014. "Incentive schemes, private information and the double-edged role of competition for agents," CFS Working Paper Series 475, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
    4. Thiele, Veikko, 2007. "Task-Specific Abilities in Multi-Task Agency Relations," MPRA Paper 2470, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Roland Bénabou & Jean Tirole, 2016. "Bonus Culture: Competitive Pay, Screening, and Multitasking," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 124(2), pages 305-370.
    6. Josse Delfgaauw & Robert Dur, 2004. "Incentives and Workers’ Motivation in the Public Sector," CESifo Working Paper Series 1223, CESifo Group Munich.
    7. Ernesto Reuben & Matthew Wiswall & Basit Zafar, 2017. "Preferences and Biases in Educational Choices and Labour Market Expectations: Shrinking the Black Box of Gender," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 127(604), pages 2153-2186, September.
    8. Anne Beyer & Ilan Guttman & Iván Marinovic, 2014. "Optimal Contracts with Performance Manipulation," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(4), pages 817-847, September.

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    Keywords

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    JEL classification:

    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • J30 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - General

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