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Implementing efficient multi-object auction institutions: An experimental study of the performance of boundedly rational agents

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  • Kagel, John H.
  • Levin, Dan

Abstract

We study three alternative implementations of the Vickrey multi-unit demand auction: Vickrey's original static sealed-bid auction and two dynamic/Ausubel auctions, with and without public dropout information reported during the auction. Although implemented by a weaker solution concept, behavior in the dynamic Vickrey auction with the public dropout information comes significantly closer to the theoretical prediction of sincere bidding, bidding one's valuations, than either the static Vickrey auction or the dynamic auction without dropout information. This suggests a possible tradeoff between the simplicity and transparency of a mechanism and the strength of its solution concept when agents are still learning and/or when players are not fully rational. Drawing on results from related single-unit and multi-unit demand auctions, and the results of a new single-unit demand auction experiment, we provide important insights into the behavioral mechanism underlying the superior performance of the Ausubel auction with feedback information.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Games and Economic Behavior.

Volume (Year): 66 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 (May)
Pages: 221-237

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Handle: RePEc:eee:gamebe:v:66:y:2009:i:1:p:221-237

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622836

Related research

Keywords: Multi-unit auctions Static Vickrey auction Dynamic Vickrey (Ausubel) auction Mechanism design Implementation;

References

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  1. Andreoni,J. & Che,Y.-K. & Kim,J., 2006. "Asymmetric information about rivals' types in standard auctions : an experiment," Working papers 6, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  2. R. Isaac & Duncan James, 2000. "Robustness of the Incentive Compatible Combinatorial Auction," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 3(1), pages 31-53, June.
  3. Paul Milgrom & Robert J. Weber, 1981. "A Theory of Auctions and Competitive Bidding," Discussion Papers 447R, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  4. Simon, Leo K & Stinchcombe, Maxwell B, 1989. "Extensive Form Games in Continuous Time: Pure Strategies," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(5), pages 1171-1214, September.
  5. Lixin Ye & John Kagel & Svetlana Pevnitska, 2004. "Survival Auctions," Econometric Society 2004 North American Winter Meetings 414, Econometric Society.
  6. Lawrence M. Ausubel, 2004. "An Efficient Ascending-Bid Auction for Multiple Objects," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(5), pages 1452-1475, December.
  7. Yan Chen & Fang-Fang Tang, 1998. "Learning and Incentive-Compatible Mechanisms for Public Goods Provision: An Experimental Study," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(3), pages 633-662, June.
  8. Levin, Dan & Kagel, John H & Richard, Jean-Francois, 1996. "Revenue Effects and Information Processing in English Common Value Auctions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 442-60, June.
  9. Kagel, John H & Harstad, Ronald M & Levin, Dan, 1987. "Information Impact and Allocation Rules in Auctions with Affiliated Private Values: A Laboratory Study," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(6), pages 1275-1304, November.
  10. Ronald Harstad, 2000. "Dominant Strategy Adoption and Bidders' Experience with Pricing Rules," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 3(3), pages 261-280, December.
  11. Dirk Engelmann & Veronika Grimm, 2003. "Bidding Behavior in Multi-Unit Auctions - An Experimental Investigation and some Theoretical Insights," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp210, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economic Institute, Prague.
  12. David Porter & Roumen Vragov, 2006. "An experimental examination of demand reduction in multi-unit versions of the Uniform-price, Vickrey, and English auctions," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(6), pages 445-458.
  13. Kagel, John H. & Levin, Dan, 2005. "Multi-unit demand auctions with synergies: behavior in sealed-bid versus ascending-bid uniform-price auctions," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 53(2), pages 170-207, November.
  14. Alejandro Manelli & Martin Sefton & Benjamin Wilner, . "Multi-Unit Auctions: A Comparison of Static and Dynamic Mechanisms," Working Papers 2132867, Department of Economics, W. P. Carey School of Business, Arizona State University.
  15. repec:feb:framed:0052 is not listed on IDEAS
  16. Kagel, John H & Levin, Dan, 2001. "Behavior in Multi-unit Demand Auctions: Experiments with Uniform Price and Dynamic Vickrey Auctions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(2), pages 413-54, March.
  17. William Vickrey, 1961. "Counterspeculation, Auctions, And Competitive Sealed Tenders," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 16(1), pages 8-37, 03.
  18. Healy, Paul J., 2006. "Learning dynamics for mechanism design: An experimental comparison of public goods mechanisms," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 129(1), pages 114-149, July.
  19. Theodore Turocy & Elizabeth Watson & Raymond Battalio, 2007. "Framing the first-price auction," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 10(1), pages 37-51, March.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Li Hao & Daniel Houser, 2012. "Belief elicitation in the presence of naïve respondents: An experimental study," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 44(2), pages 161-180, April.
  2. Yusufcan Masatlioglu & Sarah Taylor & Neslihan Uler, 2012. "Behavioral mechanism design: evidence from the modified first-price auctions," Review of Economic Design, Springer, vol. 16(2), pages 159-173, September.
  3. Anabela Botelho & Lígia M.Costa Pinto & Eduarda Fernandes, 2013. "More on the dynamic Vickrey mechanism for multi-unit auctions: an experimental study on the emission permits initial auction," NIMA Working Papers 53, Núcleo de Investigação em Microeconomia Aplicada (NIMA), Universidade do Minho.

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