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The Variable Value Environment: Auctions and Actions

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Author Info

  • Michael Schwarz

    ()
    (University of California at Berkeley and NBER)

  • Konstantin Sonin

    ()
    (New Economic School/CEFIR, Moscow)

Abstract

We model an environment, where bidders’ private values may change over time as a result of both costly private actions and exogenous shocks. Examples of private actions include investment and entry decisions; shocks might be due to exogenous changes in a potential buyer’s circumstances. We describe an efficient auction mechanism that maximizes the final value of the object to the winning bidder net of the total cost of investment by all agents. In particular, we show that, assuming that the auctioneer does not have full commitment power, costly signalling is necessary for efficient entry when agents receive private information both before and after they make the entry decision. To rule out pooling equilibria that coexist with the efficient equilibrium in the basic mechanism, we introduce a virtual-implementation-style mechanism that (i) is almost efficient; (ii) forces players to coordinate on the separating equilibrium; and (iii) is simple enough to be potentially useful in practice.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Center for Economic and Financial Research (CEFIR) in its series Working Papers with number w0020.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2001
Date of revision: Oct 2005
Handle: RePEc:cfr:cefirw:w0020

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Keywords: auctions; efficient mechanism design;

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References

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  1. Paul Klemperer, 1999. "Auction Theory: A Guide to the Literature," Microeconomics 9903002, EconWPA.
  2. Jeremy Bulow & Ming Huang & Paul Klemperer, 1999. "Toeholds and Takeovers," Finance 9903005, EconWPA.
  3. Kohlberg, Elon & Mertens, Jean-Francois, 1986. "On the Strategic Stability of Equilibria," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(5), pages 1003-37, September.
  4. Riordan, Michael H & Sappington, David E M, 1987. "Awarding Monopoly Franchises," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(3), pages 375-87, June.
  5. McAfee, R. Preston & McMillan, John, 1987. "Auctions with entry," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 343-347.
  6. Haim Levy, 1992. "Stochastic Dominance and Expected Utility: Survey and Analysis," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 38(4), pages 555-593, April.
  7. P. Dasgupta & Eric Maskin, 1998. "Efficient Auctions," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1857, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  8. 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.
  9. Myerson, Roger B, 1979. "Incentive Compatibility and the Bargaining Problem," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(1), pages 61-73, January.
  10. Paul R. Milgrom, 1985. "Auction Theory," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 779, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  11. Maskin, Eric S., 2000. "Auctions, development, and privatization: Efficient auctions with liquidity-constrained buyers," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(4-6), pages 667-681, May.
  12. Vijay Krishna & Motty Perry, 1997. "Efficient Mechanism Design," Game Theory and Information 9703010, EconWPA, revised 28 Apr 1998.
  13. Cho, In-Koo & Kreps, David M, 1987. "Signaling Games and Stable Equilibria," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 102(2), pages 179-221, May.
  14. Athey, S., 1997. "Sigle Crossing Properties and the Existence of Pure Strategy Equilibria in Games of Incomplete Information," Working papers 97-11, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  15. Levin, Dan & Smith, James L, 1994. "Equilibrium in Auctions with Entry," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 585-99, June.
  16. Milgrom, P. & Shannon, C., 1991. "Monotone Comparative Statics," Papers 11, Stanford - Institute for Thoretical Economics.
  17. Roger B. Myerson & Mark A. Satterthwaite, 1981. "Efficient Mechanisms for Bilateral Trading," Discussion Papers 469S, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  18. Milgrom, Paul R, 1981. "Rational Expectations, Information Acquisition, and Competitive Bidding," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(4), pages 921-43, June.
  19. Richard L. Fullerton & R. Preston McAfee, 1999. "Auctioning Entry into Tournaments," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(3), pages 573-605, June.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Giacomo Calzolari & Alessandro Pavan, 2006. "Monopoly with resale," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 37(2), pages 362-375, 06.
  2. Michael Schwarz & Sergei Severinov, 2010. "Investment Tournaments: When Should a Rational Agent Put All Eggs in One Basket?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 28(4), pages 893-922, October.
  3. Schmöller, Arno, 2010. "Bidding Behavior, Seller Strategies, and the Utilization of Information in Auctions for Complex Goods," Munich Dissertations in Economics 11175, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  4. Andreas Lange & John A. List & Michael K. Price, 2010. "Auctions with Resale When Private Values Are Uncertain: Evidence from the Lab and Field," NBER Working Papers 16360, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Sonin Konstantin, 2004. "Private interest in public tenders: no revenue, no efficiency and no social benefits," EERC Working Paper Series 00-111e, EERC Research Network, Russia and CIS.

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