Inequality Aversion and Externalities
University of Braunschweig - Institute of Technology, Department of Finance
University of Cologne
We conduct a general analysis of the effects of inequality aversion on decisions by homogeneous players in static and dynamic games. We distinguish between direct and indirect effects of inequality aversion. Direct effects are present when a player changes his action to affect disutility caused by inequality. Indirect effects occur when the own action is changed to affect other players' actions. We provide necessary and sufficient conditions for the occurrence of either effect. Moreover, we examine the direction of the effects. Whereas indirect effects induce players to internalize externalities they impose on others, direct effects act in the opposite direction.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 24
Keywords: inequality aversion, externalities, direct effects, indirect effects
JEL Classification: C72, D62, D63
Date posted: June 20, 2011 ; Last revised: November 29, 2011