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Auctions with Limited Commitment

Author

Listed:
  • Qingmin Liu
  • Konrad Mierendorff
  • Xianwen Shi
  • Weijie Zhong

Abstract

We study the role of limited commitment in a standard auction environment. In each period, the seller can commit to an auction with a reserve price but not to future reserve prices. We characterize the set of equilibrium profits attainable for the seller as the period length vanishes. An immediate sale by efficient auction is optimal when there are at least three buyers. For many natural distributions two buyers is enough. Otherwise, we give conditions under which the maximal profit is attained through continuously declining reserve prices.

Suggested Citation

  • Qingmin Liu & Konrad Mierendorff & Xianwen Shi & Weijie Zhong, 2019. "Auctions with Limited Commitment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 109(3), pages 876-910, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:109:y:2019:i:3:p:876-910
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.20170882
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Bester, Helmut & Strausz, Roland, 2000. "Imperfect commitment and the revelation principle: the multi-agent case," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 69(2), pages 165-171, November.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Doval, Laura & Skreta, Vasiliki, 2019. "Optimal mechanism for the sale of a durable good," CEPR Discussion Papers 13967, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Santiago R. Balseiro & Omar Besbes & Gabriel Y. Weintraub, 2019. "Dynamic Mechanism Design with Budget-Constrained Buyers Under Limited Commitment," Operations Research, INFORMS, vol. 67(3), pages 711-730, May.
    3. Fugger, Nicolas & Gretschko, Vitali & Pollrich, Martin, 2019. "Sequential procurement with limited commitment," ZEW Discussion Papers 19-030, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.
    4. Matheus V. X. Ferreira & S. Matthew Weinberg, 2020. "Credible, Truthful, and Two-Round (Optimal) Auctions via Cryptographic Commitments," Papers 2004.01598, arXiv.org, revised May 2020.
    5. Gretschko, Vitali & Pollrich, Martin, 2019. "Incomplete contracts in dynamic procurement," ZEW Discussion Papers 19-040, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D44 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Auctions
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design

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