On the complexity of price equilibria

Xiaotie Deng, Christos Papadimitriou, Shmuel Safra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We prove complexity, approximability, and inapproximability results for the problem of finding an exchange equilibrium in markets with indivisible (integer) goods, most notably a polynomial algorithm that approximates the market equilibrium arbitrarily close when the number of goods is bounded and the utilities linear. We also show a communication complexity lower bound in a model appropriate for markets. Our result implies that the ideal informational economy of a market with divisible goods and unique optimal allocations is unattainable in general.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)311-324
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Computer and System Sciences
Issue number2
StatePublished - Sep 2003


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