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Abstract

Federal budgetary pressures raise questions regarding the importance of public market information. This study assesses the impact of price discovery and production efficiency of reducing public price and quantity information. The amount and type of information provided to Fed Cattle Market Simulator (FCMS) participants was varied by periodically withholding current and weekly summary information according to a predetermined experimental design. Results show that reducing information increased price variance and decreased marketing efficiency; that is, more cattle were delivered at weights deviating from 1,150 pounds- the least-cost marketing weight in the simulator. These factors, which increase costs, make the industry less competitive.

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