Coasean Bargaining in Consumer Bankruptcy

9 Pages Posted: 19 Feb 2014

Date Written: January 24, 2014


During my first weeks as a graduate student in economics, a professor described the Coase Theorem as “nearly a tautology:” Assume a world in which bargaining is costless. If there are gains from trade, the Theorem tells us, the parties will trade. The initial assignment of property rights will not affect the final allocation because the parties will bargain (costlessly) to an efficient outcome. “How can that be a theorem?,” I remember thinking at the time.

Suggested Citation

Morrison, Edward R., Coasean Bargaining in Consumer Bankruptcy (January 24, 2014). Kreisman Working Papers Series in Housing Law and Policy No. 5. Available at SSRN: or

Edward R. Morrison (Contact Author)

Columbia Law School ( email )

435 West 116th Street
New York, NY 10025
United States

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