Transaction Costs and the Collection of Information: Presale Measurement on Private Timber Sales
Posted: 21 Feb 2000
Measurement efforts to reduce the uncertainty concerning the attributes of heterogeneous goods may simply redistribute wealth and result in social waste. Individuals bearing the cost of such distributional measurement have incentives to develop buying and selling practices that limit such measurement. We examine, both theoretically and empirically, the determinants of the level of distributional measurement efforts in a competitive auction framework. The empirical application, which uses a sample of private timber sales, provides strong support for the implications of the theoretical model of presale measurement.
JEL Classification: L23, D83, D44, Q23
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