The replacement problem in frictional economies : a near equivalence result
We examine how technological change affects wage inequality and unemployment in a calibrated model of matching frictions in the labor market. We distinguish between two polar cases studied in the literature: a "creative destruction" economy where new machines enter chiefly through new matches and an "upgrading" economy where machines in existing matches are replaced by new machines. Our main results are: (i) these two economies produce very similar quantitative outcomes, and (ii) the total amount of wage inequality generated by frictions is very small. We explain these findings in light ...
Netting, financial contracts, and banks: the economic implications
Derivatives and certain other off-balance sheet contracts enjoy special legal protection on insolvent counterparties through a process referred to as 'close-out netting.' This paper explores the legal status and economic implications of this protection. While this protection benefits major derivatives dealers and derivatives markets, it is less clear that other market participants or markets in general are better or worse off. While we are not able to conclude whether or not these protections are socially optimal, we outline the wide range of issues that a general consideration of the pros ...
For richer, for poorer: sovereign debt contracts in crisis
Lending relationships and loan contract terms: does size matter?
The paper studies a fiscal policy instrument that can reduce fiscal distortions, without affecting revenues, in a politically viable way. The instrument is a private contract (tax buyout), offered by the government to each individual citizen, whereby the citizen can choose to pay a fixed price up front in exchange for a given reduction in her tax rate for a prespecified period of time. We consider a dynamic overlapping-generations economy, calibrated to match several features of the U.S. income and wealth distribution, and show that, under simple pricing, the introduction of the buyout is ...
Courts and contractual innovation: a preliminary analysis
The authors explore a model in which agents enter into a contract but are uncertain about how a judge will enforce it. The judge can consider a wide range of evidence, or instead, use a rule-based method of judgment that relies on limited information. The authors focus on the following tradeoff: Considering a wide range of evidence increases the likelihood of a correct ruling in the case at hand but undermines the formation of precedents that resolve legal uncertainty for subsequent agents. ; In a model of contractual innovation, they show that the use of evidence increases the likelihood of ...
Sunk costs, contestability, and the latent contract market
The idea that an industry with sunk costs may be contestable even in the absence of long-term contracts has received little attention from formal economic theory yet is popular among monopolists facing antitrust suits. The paper formally illustrates the argument. In an infinitely repeated game, there exists a class of contestable outcomes in which the monopolist sells only on the spot market and charges low prices along the equilibrium path to prevent customers from resorting to long-term contracts. Then, the crucial test for contestability is the level of transaction costs in the latent ...
Competition, syndication, and entry in the venture capital market
There are two ways for a venture capital (VC) firm to enter a new market: initiate a new deal or form a syndicate with an incumbent. Both types of entry are extensively observed in the data. In this paper, I examine (i) the causes of syndication between entrant and incumbent VC firms, (ii) the impact of entry on VC contract terms and survival rates of VC-backed start-up companies, and (iii) the effect of syndication between entrant and incumbent VC firms on the competition in the VC market and the outcomes of incumbent-backed ventures. By developing a theoretical model featuring endogenous ...