Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Seminar Papers,
Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies

No 713: Who Must Pay Bribes and How Much? Evidence from a cross-section of firms

Jakob Svensson ()
Additional contact information
Jakob Svensson: Institute for International Economic Studies, Stockholm University, Postal: Stockholm University, S-106 69 Stockholm, Sweden

Abstract: This paper uses an unique data set on corruption containing quantitative information on estimated bribe payments of Ugandan firms. The data has two striking features; not all firms report they need to pay bribes; and, there is a considerable variation in reported graft across firms facing similar institutions/policies. To explain these patterns we construct a simple bargaining model. The model yields predictions on both the incidence and the level of graft. Consistent with the model we find that variation in policies/regulations (across industries) explain the incidence of corruption, while variation in profitability and technology choice explain the variation in bribes for the group of bribe paying firms. These findings suggest that public officials act as price (bribe) discriminators, and that prices of public services are endogenously determined in order to extract bribes.

Keywords: TBA

JEL-codes: C70; D00

35 pages, May 24, 2002

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