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Beneficial consumer fraud

Author

Listed:
  • Silvia Martínez-Gorricho

    () (Dpto. Análisis Económico Aplicado)

Abstract

This article considers a two-sided private information model. We assume that two exogenouslygiven qualities are offered in a monopolistic market. Prices are fixed. A low quality seller choosesto be either honest (by charging the lower market price) or dishonest (by charging the higherprice). We discuss the signalling role of consumers’ information on the equilibrium level ofdishonesty, incidence of fraud and trade. We demonstrate that the equilibrium incidence offraud is non-monotonic in information. This result holds as long as information is noisy andregardless of its private or public nature. Welfare consequences are ambiguous.

Suggested Citation

  • Silvia Martínez-Gorricho, 2012. "Beneficial consumer fraud," Working Papers. Serie AD 2012-13, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
  • Handle: RePEc:ivi:wpasad:2012-13
    as

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    File URL: http://www.ivie.es/downloads/docs/wpasad/wpasad-2012-13.pdf
    File Function: Fisrt version / Primera version, 2012
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Voorneveld, Mark & Weibull, Jörgen W., 2004. "Prices and quality signals," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 551, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 06 Jul 2004.
    2. Bester, Helmut & Ritzberger, Klaus, 2001. "Strategic pricing, signalling, and costly information acquisition," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 19(9), pages 1347-1361, November.
    3. Taylor, Curtis R, 1995. "The Economics of Breakdowns, Checkups, and Cures," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(1), pages 53-74, February.
    4. Edward E. Schlee, 1996. "The Value of Information About Product Quality," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 27(4), pages 803-815, Winter.
    5. Mark N. Hertzendorf, 1993. "I'm Not a High-Quality Firm -- But I Play One on TV," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 24(2), pages 236-247, Summer.
    6. Mark Armstrong & John Vickers & Jidong Zhou, 2009. "Consumer Protection and the Incentive to Become Informed," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 7(2-3), pages 399-410, 04-05.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Consumer Fraud; Asymmetric Information; Price Signalling;

    JEL classification:

    • D42 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Monopoly
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading
    • L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
    • L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation

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