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Reserve Price When Bidders are Asymmetric

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  • Hikmet Gunay
  • Xin Meng
  • Mark Nagelberg

Abstract

We analyze the optimal reserve price in a second price auction when there are N types of bidders whose valuations are drawn from different distribution functions. The seller cannot determine the specific type of each bidder. First, we show that the number of bidders affects the reserve price. Second, we give the sufficient conditions for the uniqueness of the optimal reserve price. Third, we find that if a bidder is replaced by a stronger bidder, the optimal reserve price may decrease. Finally, we give sufficient conditions that ensure the seller will not use a reserve price; hence, the auction will be efficient.

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Paper provided by Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University in its series ISER Discussion Paper with number 0849.

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Date of creation: Jul 2012
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Handle: RePEc:dpr:wpaper:0849

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  1. Estelle Cantillon, 2000. "The Effect of Bidders' Asymmetries on Expected Revenue in Auctions," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1279, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  2. Lebrun, Bernard, 1999. "First Price Auctions in the Asymmetric N Bidder Case," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 40(1), pages 125-42, February.
  3. McAfee, R. Preston & Vincent, Daniel, 1997. "Sequentially Optimal Auctions," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 246-276, February.
  4. Rene Kirkegaard, 2011. "Ranking Asymmetric Auctions using the Dispersive Order," Working Papers 1101, University of Guelph, Department of Economics and Finance.
  5. McAfee, R. Preston & McMillan, John, 1987. "Auctions with entry," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 343-347.
  6. Levin, Dan & Smith, James L, 1996. "Optimal Reservation Prices in Auctions," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(438), pages 1271-83, September.
  7. Krishnendu Ghosh Dastidar, 2010. "Auctions where incomes are private information and preferences (non quasi-linear) are common knowledge," ISER Discussion Paper 0790, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
  8. Kirkegaard, René, 2009. "Asymmetric first price auctions," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(4), pages 1617-1635, July.
  9. Kirkegaard, Rene, 2005. "Participation fees vs. reserve prices in auctions with asymmetric or colluding buyers," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 89(3), pages 328-332, December.
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