• BOEHM Johannes (1)
  • HENRY Emeric (1)
Document Type
  • Working paper (2)
Publication date 2015-11

It is now well documented that individuals, on average, change their behavior when their actions are observed by others. Yet, there is no systematic way of measuring this dimension of preferences at the individual level. In this paper, we propose a novel experimental game to measure the individual sensitivity to image concerns. We show that few socio-economic characteristics can explain the level of image concern. One exception is that members of ethnic minorities seem to be more imaged concerned, in particular when observed by a member of other groups. Men (resp. women) are more image concerned when observed by women (resp. men). Finally, we show that more image concerned individuals tend to be more selfish and find evidence consistent with the fact that they try to avoid situations where their actions risk being visible.

This paper studies the prevalence of vertical market foreclosure using a novel dataset on U.S. and international buyer-seller relationships, and across a large range of industries. We find that relationships are more likely to break when suppliers vertically integrate with one of the buyers’ competitors than when they vertically integrate with an unrelated firm. This relationship holds also, among other things, when conditioning on mergers that follow exogenous downward pressure on the supplier’s stock prices, suggesting that reverse causality is unlikely to explain the result. In contrast, the relationship vanishes when using rumored or announced but not completed integration events. Firms experience a substantial drop in sales when one of their suppliers integrates with one of their competitors. This sales drop is mitigated if the firm has alternative suppliers in place.