Price Regulation, Investment and the Commitment Problem
We consider a dynamic model of price regulation with asymmetric information where strategic delegation is available to the regulator. Firms can sink non-contractible, cost-reducing investment but regulators cannot commit to future price levels. We fully characterise the perfect Bayesian equilibrium and show that, with incentive contracts and no delegation, under-investment occurs. We then show that delegation to a suitable regulator can both improve investment incentives and ameliorate the ratchet effect by credibly offering the firm future rent. Simulations indicate significant welfare gains from these two effects and that a wide range of regulatory preferences can achieve this result.
|Date of creation:||May 2003|
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879, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
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- Chaim Fershtman & Ehud Kalai, 1993.
1043, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
- Mark Armstrong & Simon Cowan & John Vickers, 1994. "Regulatory Reform: Economic Analysis and British Experience," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262510790, September.
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43-96, Tel Aviv.
- Spulber, Daniel F & Besanko, David, 1992. "Delegation, Commitment, and the Regulatory Mandate," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 8(1), pages 126-154, March.
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- Urbiztondo, Santiago, 1994. "Investment without Regulatory Commitment: The Case of Elastic Demand," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 6(1), pages 87-96, February.
- Goodwin, Thomas H. & Patrick, Robert H., 1992. "Capital recovery for the regulated firm under certainty and regulatory uncertainty," Resources and Energy, Elsevier, vol. 14(4), pages 337-361, December.
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