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Why Peaches Must Circulate Longer than Lemons


  • Inderst, Roman

    () (Sonderforschungsbereich 504)

  • Müller, Holger M.

    () (Department of Economics, University of Mannheim)


This paper considers a competitive search market where sellers have private information about a good's quality. It is shown that separation of types may arise naturally if high-quality sellers derive a greater utility from search than low-quality sellers. For instance, sellers of high-quality goods may have to invest less time and money on repairs or spare parts than low-quality sellers or simply face a lower probability that the good breaks down before it is sold. In equilibrium, high-quality goods sell at a higher price, but also circulate longer than low-quality goods to ensure that low-quality sellers do not enter the market for high-quality goods. This holds even if an explicit sorting variable (e.g. warranties, advertising) does not exist. Moreover, all members of the short side of the market engage in trade, which is in contrast to the standard analysis where part of the short side of the market may not be served despite the presence of gains from trade

Suggested Citation

  • Inderst, Roman & Müller, Holger M., 1999. "Why Peaches Must Circulate Longer than Lemons," Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications 99-59, Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim;Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim.
  • Handle: RePEc:xrs:sfbmaa:99-59 Note: Financial Support from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, SFB 504, at the University of Mannheim, is gratefully acknowledged.

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Larry M. Ausubel & Raymond J. Deneckere, 1989. "Reputation in Bargaining and Durable Goods Monopoly," Levine's Working Paper Archive 201, David K. Levine.
    2. Hendricks, Ken & Weiss, Andrew & Wilson, Charles A, 1988. "The War of Attrition in Continuous Time with Complete Information," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 29(4), pages 663-680, November.
    3. Dilip Abreu & Faruk Gul, 2000. "Bargaining and Reputation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(1), pages 85-118, January.
    4. Ausubel, Lawrence M & Deneckere, Raymond J, 1989. "Reputation in Bargaining and Durable Goods Monopoly," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(3), pages 511-531, May.
    5. Gul, Faruk & Sonnenschein, Hugo & Wilson, Robert, 1986. "Foundations of dynamic monopoly and the coase conjecture," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 155-190, June.
    6. Olivier Compte & Philippe Jehiel, 2002. "On the Role of Outside Options in Bargaining with Obstinate Parties," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(4), pages 1477-1517, July.
    7. Lawrence M. Ausubel & Raymond J. Deneckere, 1992. "Durable Goods Monopoly with Incomplete Information," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 59(4), pages 795-812.
    8. Kambe, Shinsuke, 1999. "Bargaining with Imperfect Commitment," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 217-237, August.
    9. Kennan, John & Wilson, Robert, 1993. "Bargaining with Private Information," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 31(1), pages 45-104, March.
    10. Drew Fudenberg & David K. Levine & Jean Tirole, 1985. "Infinite-Horizon Models of Bargaining with One-Sided Incomplete Information," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1098, David K. Levine.
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    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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