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Competitive Search Markets with Adverse Selection

Author

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  • Inderst, Roman

    () (Sonderforschungsbereich 504)

  • Müller, Holger M.

    () (Department of Economics, University of Mannheim)

Abstract

In a seminal paper, Rothschild and Stiglitz (1976) show that competitive markets with incomplete information in which firms offer contracts to screen privately informed agents may have no equilibrium. In this paper, we argue that frictions in the form of delay or congestion provide a natural solution to the nonexistence problem. To show this, we extend the concept of competitive search equilibrium by Moen (1997) to markets with incomplete information. Our main result is that a separating equilibrium always exists. In particular, the separating equilibrium cannot be broken by a profitable pooling offer as the latter attracts only the lowest types in the population due to the ensuing congestion.

Suggested Citation

  • Inderst, Roman & Müller, Holger M., 1999. "Competitive Search Markets with Adverse Selection," Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications 99-52, Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim;Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim.
  • Handle: RePEc:xrs:sfbmaa:99-52
    Note: Financial Support from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, SFB 504, at the University of Mannheim, is gratefully acknowledged.
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    Cited by:

    1. Piero Gottardi & Sarah Auster, 2016. "Competing Mechanisms in Markets for Lemons," 2016 Meeting Papers 264, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    2. Moen, Espen R, 2002. "Do Good Workers Hurt Bad Workers - or is it the Other Way Around?," CEPR Discussion Papers 3471, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness

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