This paper proposes a model for a certification market with an imperfect testing technology. Such a technology only assures that whenever two products are tested the higher quality product is more likely to pass than the lower quality one.When only one certifier with such testing technology is present in the market, it is found that this monopoly certifier can be completely ignored in equilibrium, in contrast to the prediction of a model with perfect testing technology. A separating equilibrium is also supported in which only relatively high quality types (products) choose to pay for the certification service. It is true that in such an equilibrium having a certificate is better than not. The exact value of a certificate, however, depends both on the prior distribution of product quality and the nature of the testing technology.Welfare accounting shows that the monopolistic certifier’s profit maximizing conduct can lead to under or over supply of certification service depending on model specification. Optimal certification fee is always positive and such that it makes all positive types choose to test. In the case of two competing certifiers with identical testing technologies, the intuition of Bertrand competition does not necessarily hold. Segmentation equilibrium in which higher seller types choose the more expensive certification service and not so high types choose the less expensive service can be supported. As an application, we argue that the fee differentiation between major and non-major auditing firms need not be a result of any differences in their auditing technologies.
|Date of creation:||Nov 2008|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Hohenzollernstraße 1-3, 45128 Essen|
Web page: http://www.rwi-essen.de/
More information through EDIRC
|Order Information:||Web: http://www.rwi-essen.de/publikationen/|
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.:
- Sattar A. Mansi & William F. Maxwell & Darius P. Miller, 2004. "Does Auditor Quality and Tenure Matter to Investors? Evidence from the Bond Market," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(4), pages 755-793, 09.
- DeAngelo, Linda Elizabeth, 1981. "Auditor size and audit quality," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(3), pages 183-199, December.
- Grossman, Sanford J, 1981. "The Informational Role of Warranties and Private Disclosure about Product Quality," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(3), pages 461-83, December.
- Biglaiser, Gary & Friedman, James W., 1994. "Middlemen as guarantors of quality," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 12(4), pages 509-531, December.
- Anette Boom, . "A Monopolistic Credit Rating Agency," Papers 011, Departmental Working Papers.
- Robert Heinkel, 1981. "Uncertain Product Quality: The Market for Lemons with an Imperfect Testing Technology," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 12(2), pages 625-636, Autumn.
- Klein, Benjamin & Leffler, Keith B, 1981. "The Role of Market Forces in Assuring Contractual Performance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(4), pages 615-41, August.
- George A. Akerlof, 1970. "The Market for "Lemons": Quality Uncertainty and the Market Mechanism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 84(3), pages 488-500.
- Mason, Charles F & Sterbenz, Frederic P, 1994. "Imperfect Product Testing and Market Size," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 35(1), pages 61-86, February.
- Gary Biglaiser, 1993. "Middlemen as Experts," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 24(2), pages 212-223, Summer.
- De, Sankar & Nabar, Prafulla, 1991. "Economic implications of imperfect quality certification," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 37(4), pages 333-337, December.
- Titman, Sheridan & Trueman, Brett, 1986. "Information quality and the valuation of new issues," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 159-172, June.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:rwi:repape:0078. 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: (Sabine Weiler)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.