Individual Rationality and Market Efficiency
The demonstration by Smith  that prices and allocations quickly converge to the competitive equilibrium in the continuous double auction (CDA) was one of the first – and remains one of the most important results in experimental economics. His initial experiment, subsequent market experiments, and models of price adjustment and exchange have added considerably to our knowledge of how markets reach equilibrium, and how they respond to disruptions. Perhaps the best known model of exchange in CDA market experiments is the random behavior in the “zero-intelligence” (ZI) model by Gode and Sunder . They conclude that even without trader rationality the CDA generates efficient allocations and “convergence of transaction prices to the proximity of the theoretical equilibrium price,” provided only that agents meet their budget constraints. We demonstrate that – by any reasonable measure – prices don’t converge in their simulations. Their budget constraint requires that a buyer’s currency never exceeds her value for the commodity, which is an unnatural restriction. Their conclusion that market efficiency results from the structure of the CDA independent of traders’ profit seeking behavior rests on their claim that the constraints that they impose are a part of the market institution, but this is not so. We show that they in effect impose individual rationality, which is an aspect of agents' behavior. Researchers on learning in markets have been misled by their interpretation of the ZI simulations, with deleterious effects on the debate on market adjustment processes.
|Date of creation:||Aug 2007|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Web page: http://www.krannert.purdue.edu/programs/phd
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- John List, 2004.
"Testing neoclassical competitive theory in multi-lateral decentralized markets,"
Framed Field Experiments
00176, The Field Experiments Website.
- John A. List, 2004. "Testing Neoclassical Competitive Theory in Multilateral Decentralized Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(5), pages 1131-1156, October.
- Gjerstad, S. & Dickhaut, J., 1995.
"Price Formation in Double Auctions,"
284, Minnesota - Center for Economic Research.
- Antoni Bosch-Domènech & Joaquim Silvestre, 1996.
"Credit constraints in general equilibrium: Experimental results,"
Economics Working Papers
105, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
- Bosch-Domenech, Antoni & Silvestre, Joaquim, 1997. "Credit Constraints in General Equilibrium: Experimental Results," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(444), pages 1445-64, September.
- Bosch-Domenech, A. & Silvestre, J., 1995. "Credit Constraint in General Equilibrium: Experimental Results," Papers 95-07, California Davis - Institute of Governmental Affairs.
- Joaquim Silvestre & Antoni Bosch-Domenech, 2004. "Credit Constraints In General Equilibrium: Experimental Results," Working Papers 957, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
- Bosch-Domenech, A. & Silvestre, J., 1995. "Credit Constraint in General Equilibrium: Experimental Results," Department of Economics 95-07, California Davis - Department of Economics.
- Daniel Friedman, 1982.
"Price Formation in Double Auction Markets,"
UCLA Economics Working Papers
278, UCLA Department of Economics.
- Gjerstad, S., 2006.
"The Competitive Market Paradox,"
Purdue University Economics Working Papers
1180, Purdue University, Department of Economics.
- Easley, David & Ledyard, John., . "Theories of Price Formation and Exchange in Double Oral Auctions," Working Papers 611, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
- Markose, Sheri & Arifovic, Jasmina & Sunder, Shyam, 2007. "Advances in experimental and agent-based modelling: Asset markets, economic networks, computational mechanism design and evolutionary game dynamics," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 1801-1807, June.
- Vernon L. Smith, 1962.
"An Experimental Study of Competitive Market Behavior,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 70, pages 322.
- Vernon L. Smith, 1962. "An Experimental Study of Competitive Market Behavior," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 70, pages 111.
- Hurwicz, Leonid & Radner, Roy & Reiter, Stanley, 1975.
"A Stochastic Decentralized Resource Allocation Process: Part II,"
Econometric Society, vol. 43(3), pages 363-93, May.
- Hurwicz, Leonid & Radner, Roy & Reiter, Stanley, 1975. "A Stochastic Decentralized Resource Allocation Process: Part I," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 43(2), pages 187-221, March.
- Smith, Vernon L, 1982. "Microeconomic Systems as an Experimental Science," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(5), pages 923-55, December.
- John Conlisk, 1996. "Why Bounded Rationality?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(2), pages 669-700, June.
- Evans, Dorla A, 1997. "The Role of Markets in Reducing Expected Utility Violations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(3), pages 622-36, June.
- Tesfatsion, Leigh S., 2002. "Agent-Based Computational Economics: Growing Economies from the Bottom Up," Staff General Research Papers 5075, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pur:prukra:1204. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Krannert PHD)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.