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Bidding Behavior in Multi-Unit Auctions - An Experimental Investigation and some Theoretical Insights

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  • Dirk Engelmann
  • Veronika Grimm

Abstract

We present laboratory experiments of five different multi-unit auction mechanisms. Two units of a homogeneous object were auctioned off among two bidders with at demand for two units. We test whether expected demand reduction occurs in open and sealed-bid uniform-price auctions. Revenue equivalence is tested for these auctions as well as for the Ausubel, the Vickrey and the discriminatory sealed-bid auction. Furthermore, we compare the five mechanisms with respect to the efficient allocation of the units. We also provide some theoretical insights concerning the equilibria of uniform-price auctions with incomplete information.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economic Institute, Prague in its series CERGE-EI Working Papers with number wp210.

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Date of creation: Jun 2003
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Handle: RePEc:cer:papers:wp210

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Keywords: Multi-Unit Auctions; Demand Reduction; Experimental Economics;

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  1. David M Kreps & Robert Wilson, 2003. "Sequential Equilibria," Levine's Working Paper Archive 618897000000000813, David K. Levine.
  2. Matthew Rabin, 2000. "Risk Aversion and Expected-Utility Theory: A Calibration Theorem," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(5), pages 1281-1292, September.
  3. Charness, Gary & Rabin, Matthew, 2002. "Understanding Social Preferences with Simple Tests," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt3d04q5sm, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  4. Gautam Goswami & Thomas Noe & Michael Rebello, 1995. "Collusion in uniform-price auctions: experimental evidence and implications for Treasury auctions," Working Paper 95-5, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  5. Georg Nöldeke & Eric van Damme, 1990. "Switching Away From Probability One Beliefs," Discussion Paper Serie A 304, University of Bonn, Germany.
  6. Alsemgeest, Paul & Noussair, Charles & Olson, Mark, 1998. "Experimental Comparisons of Auctions under Single- and Multi-Unit Demand," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 36(1), pages 87-97, January.
  7. Glenn Harrison & John List, 2004. "Field experiments," Artefactual Field Experiments 00058, The Field Experiments Website.
  8. Manelli, Alejandro M. & Sefton, Martin & Wilner, Benjamin S., 2006. "Multi-unit auctions: A comparison of static and dynamic mechanisms," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 61(2), pages 304-323, October.
  9. Matthew Rabin & Richard H. Thaler, 2001. "Anomalies: Risk Aversion," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(1), pages 219-232, Winter.
  10. Richard Engelbrecht-Wiggans & Charles M. Kahn, 1998. "Multi-unit auctions with uniform prices," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 12(2), pages 227-258.
  11. Richard Engelbrecht-Wiggans & John A. List & David H. Reiley, 2006. "Demand Reduction In Multi-Unit Auctions With Varying Numbers Of Bidders: Theory And Evidence From A Field Experiment ," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 47(1), pages 203-231, 02.
  12. Noussair, C.N., 1995. "Equilibria in a multi-object uniform price sealed bid auction with multi-unit demands," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-381122, Tilburg University.
  13. David Lucking-Reiley & John A. List, 2000. "Demand Reduction in Multiunit Auctions: Evidence from a Sportscard Field Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 961-972, September.
  14. Madrigal, Vicente & Tan, Tommy C. C. & Werlang, Sergio Ribeiro da Costa, 1987. "Support restrictions and sequential equilibria," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 329-334, December.
  15. Grimm, Veronika & Riedel, Frank & Wolfstetter, Elmar, 2003. "Low price equilibrium in multi-unit auctions: the GSM spectrum auction in Germany," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 21(10), pages 1557-1569, December.
  16. Groves, Theodore, 1973. "Incentives in Teams," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(4), pages 617-31, July.
  17. 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.
  18. Edward Clarke, 1971. "Multipart pricing of public goods," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 17-33, September.
  19. 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.
  20. Lawrence M. Ausubel & Peter Cramton, 1995. "Demand Reduction and Inefficiency in Multi-Unit Auctions," Papers of Peter Cramton 98wpdr, University of Maryland, Department of Economics - Peter Cramton, revised 22 Jul 2002.
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Cited by:
  1. Jacob Goeree & Theo Offerman & Randolph Sloof, 2013. "Demand reduction and preemptive bidding in multi-unit license auctions," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 16(1), pages 52-87, March.
  2. Atakelty Hailu & Sophie Thoyer, 2006. "Multi-unit auction format design," Journal of Economic Interaction and Coordination, Springer, vol. 1(2), pages 129-146, November.
  3. List, John A. & Reiley, David, 2008. "Field Experiments in Economics: Palgrave Entry," IZA Discussion Papers 3273, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Veronika Grimm & Giovanni Ponti & Jaromir Kovarik, 2006. "Fixed priced plus rationing: An experiment," Working Papers. Serie AD 2006-26, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
  5. Timothy N. Cason & Charles Noussair, 2007. "A Market With Frictions In The Matching Process: An Experimental Study," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 48(2), pages 665-691, 05.
  6. Kagel, John H. & Levin, Dan, 2009. "Implementing efficient multi-object auction institutions: An experimental study of the performance of boundedly rational agents," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 221-237, May.

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