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Screening Risk-Averse Agents Under Moral Hazard

  • Jullien, Bruno
  • Salanié, Bernard
  • Salanié, François

Principal-agent models of moral hazard have been developed under the assumption that the principal knows the agent's risk-aversion. This Paper extends the moral hazard model to the case when the agent's risk-aversion is his private information, so that the model also exhibits adverse selection. We characterize the optimal menu of contracts; while its detailed properties depend on the setting, we show that some of them must hold for all environments. In particular, the power of incentives always decreases with risk-aversion. We also characterize the relationship between the outside option and the optimal contracts. We then apply our results to insurance, managerial incentive pay and corporate governance.

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Paper provided by Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse in its series IDEI Working Papers with number 131.

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Date of creation: 2001
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Handle: RePEc:ide:wpaper:1234
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  1. Jensen, M.C. & Murphy, K.J., 1988. "Performance Pay And Top Management Incentives," Papers 88-04, Rochester, Business - Managerial Economics Research Center.
  2. Brian J. Hall & Jeffrey B. Liebman, 1998. "Are CEOs Really Paid Like Bureaucrats?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 113(3), pages 653-691, August.
  3. Hayne E. Leland and David H. Pyle., 1976. "Informational Asymmetries, Financial Structure, and Financial Intermediation," Research Program in Finance Working Papers 41, University of California at Berkeley.
  4. Faynzilberg, Peter S. & Kumar, Praveen, 1997. "Optimal Contracting of Separable Production Technologies," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 21(1-2), pages 15-39, October.
  5. Hemenway, David, 1990. "Propitious Selection," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 105(4), pages 1063-69, November.
  6. Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1977. "Monopoly, Non-linear Pricing and Imperfect Information: The Insurance Market," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(3), pages 407-30, October.
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  8. Guiso, Luigi & Jappelli, Tullio & Terlizzese, Daniele, 1994. "Income Risk, Borrowing Constraints and Portfolio Choice," CEPR Discussion Papers 888, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Dionne, Georges & Eeckhoudt, Louis, 1985. "Self-insurance, self-protection and increased risk aversion," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 17(1-2), pages 39-42.
  10. Ian Jewitt, 1989. "Choosing Between Risky Prospects: The Characterization of Comparative Statics Results, and Location Independent Risk," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 35(1), pages 60-70, January.
  11. Jullien, Bruno, 1997. "Participation Constraints in Adverse Selection Models," IDEI Working Papers 67, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  12. de Meza, David & Webb, David C, 2001. "Advantageous Selection in Insurance Markets," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 32(2), pages 249-62, Summer.
  13. Ross, Stephen A, 1981. "Some Stronger Measures of Risk Aversion in the Small and the Large with Applications," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(3), pages 621-38, May.
  14. Ehrlich, Isaac & Becker, Gary S, 1972. "Market Insurance, Self-Insurance, and Self-Protection," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 80(4), pages 623-48, July-Aug..
  15. Myerson, Roger B., 1982. "Optimal coordination mechanisms in generalized principal-agent problems," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 67-81, June.
  16. David P. Baron & David Besanko, 1987. "Monitoring, Moral Hazard, Asymmetric Information, and Risk Sharing in Procurement Contracting," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 18(4), pages 509-532, Winter.
  17. Hemenway, David, 1992. " Propitious Selection in Insurance," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 5(3), pages 247-51, July.
  18. Pauly, Mark V, 1974. "Overinsurance and Public Provision of Insurance: The Roles of Moral Hazard and Adverse Selection," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 88(1), pages 44-62, February.
  19. Laffont, Jean-Jacques & Tirole, Jean, 1986. "Using Cost Observation to Regulate Firms," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(3), pages 614-41, June.
  20. R. Preston McAfee & John McMillan, 1987. "Competition for Agency Contracts," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 18(2), pages 296-307, Summer.
  21. Stewart, Jay, 1994. "The Welfare Implications of Moral Hazard and Adverse Selection in Competitive Insurance Markets," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 32(2), pages 193-208, April.
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