In his rich contribution, Arruñada (2017) debates what institutions are needed to enforce complex ‘sequential’ transactions embedded in interdependent private contracts, and more specifically discusses the conditions of their efficiency when it comes to transferring property. Beyond acknowledging the importance of this issue and the very stimulating and often counterintuitive ideas developed in the paper, this short note challenges some of the positions adopted by Arruñada, particularly regarding the relevance of ‘The problem of social cost’ (Coase, 1960) for dealing with this issue. It also raises questions about the institutional, hybrid arrangement advocated as the solution for dealing with sequential transactions.
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