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Auctions and corruption: An analysis of bid rigging by a corrupt auctioneer

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  • Lengwiler, Yvan
  • Wolfstetter, Elmar

Abstract

In many auctions, the auctioneer is an agent of the seller. This invites corruption. We analyze a model in which the auctioneer orchestrates bid rigging by inviting a bidder to either lower or raise his bid, whichever is more profitable. The interplay between these two types of corruption gives rise to a complex bidding problem that we tackle with numerical methods. Our results indicate that corruption does not only redistribute surplus away from the seller, but also distorts efficiency. We furthermore explain why both, the auctioneer and bidders, have a vested interest in maintaining corruption.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control.

Volume (Year): 34 (2010)
Issue (Month): 10 (October)
Pages: 1872-1892

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Handle: RePEc:eee:dyncon:v:34:y:2010:i:10:p:1872-1892

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Related research

Keywords: Auctions Corruption Procurement Bid rigging;

References

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  1. Robert H. Porter & J. Douglas Zona, 1997. "Ohio School Milk Markets: An Analysis of Bidding," NBER Working Papers 6037, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Paulo Klinger Monteiro & Flavio Menezes, 2001. "Corruption and auctions," Microeconomics, EconWPA 0105002, EconWPA.
  3. Marco Celentani & Juan J. Ganuza, 2000. "Corruption and competition in procurement," Economics Working Papers 464, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Mar 2001.
  4. Roberto Burguet & Martin Perry, 2000. "Bribery and Favoritism by Auctioneers in Sealed Bid Auctions," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 1827, Econometric Society.
  5. Susan Athey & Kyle Bagwell & Chris Sanchirico, 2004. "Collusion and Price Rigidity," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(2), pages 317-349.
  6. Laffont, Jean-Jacques & Tirole, Jean, 1991. "Auction design and favoritism," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 9(1), pages 9-42, March.
  7. Roberto Burguet & Yeon-Koo Che, 2004. "Competitive Procurement with Corruption," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 35(1), pages 50-68, Spring.
  8. Arozamena, Leandro & Weinschelbaum, Federico, 2009. "The effect of corruption on bidding behavior in first-price auctions," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 53(6), pages 645-657, August.
  9. Aoyagi, Masaki, 2007. "Efficient collusion in repeated auctions with communication," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 134(1), pages 61-92, May.
  10. McAfee, R Preston & McMillan, John, 1992. "Bidding Rings," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 579-99, June.
  11. Haile, Philip A., 2003. "Auctions with private uncertainty and resale opportunities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 108(1), pages 72-110, January.
  12. Benny Moldovanu & Manfred Tietzel, 1998. "Goethe's Second-Price Auction," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(4), pages 854-859, August.
  13. Brit Grosskopf & Alvin E. Roth, 2006. "If you are offered the Right of First Refusal, Should you accept? An Investigation of Contract Design," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000001017, UCLA Department of Economics.
  14. Bikhchandani Sushil & Lippman Steven A. & Ryan Reade, 2005. "On the Right-of-First-Refusal," The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics, De Gruyter, De Gruyter, vol. 5(1), pages 1-44, April.
  15. Mailath, George J. & Zemsky, Peter, 1991. "Collusion in second price auctions with heterogeneous bidders," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 467-486, November.
  16. Graham, Daniel A & Marshall, Robert C, 1987. "Collusive Bidder Behavior at Single-Object Second-Price and English Auctions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(6), pages 1217-39, December.
  17. Riley, John G, 1989. "Expected Revenue from Open and Sealed Bid Auctions," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 3(3), pages 41-50, Summer.
  18. Koc, Sevket Alper & Neilson, William S., 2008. "Interim bribery in auctions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 99(2), pages 238-241, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Arozamena, Leandro & Weinschelbaum, Federico, 2009. "The effect of corruption on bidding behavior in first-price auctions," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 53(6), pages 645-657, August.
  2. Vitali Gretschko & Achim Wambach, 2012. "Auctions vs. Negotiations: The Case of Favoritism," CESifo Working Paper Series 4045, CESifo Group Munich.

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