Universität zu Köln

Three Essays on Credence Goods: The Impact of Expert and Market Characteristics on the Level of Expert Fraud

Waibel, Christian Georg (2013) Three Essays on Credence Goods: The Impact of Expert and Market Characteristics on the Level of Expert Fraud. PhD thesis, Universität zu Köln.

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    Abstract

    The present thesis analyzes how expert and market characteristics influence an expert's incentive to defraud his customers in a market for credence goods. An expert faces an informational advantage over his customers which may lead to fraudulent behavior. In chapter two, field data from the car repair market is used in order to investigate the impact of four key economic factors on the level of expert fraud. It is shown that an intense competition and a high expert competence reduce the level of expert fraud while a critical financial situation and low reputational concerns increase the level of fraud. In chapter three, the impact of other-regarding preferences on the level of expert fraud is studied. Experts face conscience costs when they defraud their customers. Customers face trust costs when receiving a major-treatment recommendation. It is shown that the level of fraud does not necessarily decrease in equilibrium when introducing these other-regarding preferences but may even rise. In chapter four, it is experimentally explored how price competition and two reputation mechanisms influence the expert's incentive to defraud. The level of expert fraud is lower under fixed than under flexible prices while the difference in the level of fraud between the two reputation mechanisms depends upon whether prices are fixed or flexible.

    Item Type: Thesis (PhD thesis)
    Creators:
    CreatorsEmail
    Waibel, Christian Georgcwaibel@ethz.ch
    URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-50190
    Subjects: Economics
    Uncontrolled Keywords:
    KeywordsLanguage
    Credence goods, expert markets, asymmetric information, fraudEnglish
    Faculty: Wirtschafts- u. Sozialwissenschaftliche Fakultät
    Divisions: Wirtschafts- u. Sozialwissenschaftliche Fakultät > Staatswissenschaftliches (Volkswirtschaftliches) Seminar
    Language: English
    Date: 2013
    Date Type: Publication
    Date of oral exam: 22 January 2013
    Full Text Status: Public
    Date Deposited: 31 Jan 2013 10:08:04
    Referee
    NameAcademic Title
    Wambach, AchimProf., Ph.D.
    Rockenbach, BettinaProf. Dr.
    URI: http://kups.ub.uni-koeln.de/id/eprint/5019

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