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Repeated Interaction and the Revelation of the Monitor's Type: A Principal-Monitor-Agent Problem

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  • Osório Costa, Antonio Miguel

Abstract

This paper studies a dynamic principal-monitor-agent relation where a strategic principal delegates the task of monitoring the effort of a strategic agent to a third party. The latter we call the monitor, whose type is initially unknown. Through repeated interaction the agent might learn his type. We show that this process damages the principal's payoffs. Compensation is assumed exogenous, limiting to a great extent the provision of incentives. We go around this difficulty by introducing costly replacement strategies, i.e. the principal replaces the monitor, thus disrupting the agent's learning. We found that even when replacement costs are null, if the revealed monitor is strictly preferred by both parties, there is a loss in efficiency due to the impossibility of bene…tting from it. Nonetheless, these strategies can partially recover the principal's losses. Additionally, we establish upper and lower bounds on the payoffs that the principal and the agent can achieve. Finally we characterize the equilibrium strategies under public and private monitoring (with communication) for different cost and impatience levels.

Suggested Citation

  • Osório Costa, Antonio Miguel, 2010. "Repeated Interaction and the Revelation of the Monitor's Type: A Principal-Monitor-Agent Problem," Working Papers 2072/151619, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:urv:wpaper:2072/151619
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    5. Abreu, Dilip & Pearce, David & Stacchetti, Ennio, 1986. "Optimal cartel equilibria with imperfect monitoring," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 251-269, June.
    6. Clive Bull, 1987. "The Existence of Self-Enforcing Implicit Contracts," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 102(1), pages 147-159.
    7. George Baker & Robert Gibbons & Kevin J. Murphy, 1994. "Subjective Performance Measures in Optimal Incentive Contracts," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(4), pages 1125-1156.
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    Keywords

    33 - Economia;

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