The Institutional Microeconomics of Positional Goods

Massimiliano Vatiero (University of Lugano)

Abstract: Positional goods are a subset of economic goods whose consumption (and subsequent utility), also conditioned by Giffen-like pricing, depends negatively on consumption of others. We, hence, present a microeconomic foundation of positional good, in accordance with textbook treatment of the consumption of standard economic goods, i.e. private and public good. In particular, positional good is here defined as both double rival and double excludable good. It leads to institutional concerns, which we explore in the article. (JEL Code: D01, D11, D62, H23)

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