IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/aea/aejmic/v7y2015i3p85-103.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Cyber-Shilling in Automobile Auctions: Evidence from a Field Experiment

Author

Listed:
  • David Grether
  • David Porter
  • Matthew Shum

Abstract

We run a large field experiment with an online company specializing in selling used automobiles via ascending auctions. We manipulate experimentally the "price grid," or the possible amounts that bidders can bid above the current standing price. Using two diverse auction sites, one in New York and one in Texas, we find that buyer and seller behavior differs strikingly across the two sites. Specifically, in Texas we find peculiar patterns of bidding among a small but prominent group of buyers suggesting that they are "cyber-shills" working on behalf of sellers. These patterns do not appear in the New York auctions. (JEL C93, D12, D44, L62, L81)

Suggested Citation

  • David Grether & David Porter & Matthew Shum, 2015. "Cyber-Shilling in Automobile Auctions: Evidence from a Field Experiment," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 7(3), pages 85-103, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aejmic:v:7:y:2015:i:3:p:85-103
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/mic.20120085
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/mic.20120085
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/aej/mic/ds/0703/2012-0085_ds.zip
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/aej/mic/data/0703/2012-0085_data.zip
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/aej/mic/app/0703/2012-0085_app.pdf
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to AEA members and institutional subscribers.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Min Ding & Jehoshua Eliashberg & Joel Huber & Ritesh Saini, 2005. "Emotional Bidders---An Analytical and Experimental Examination of Consumers' Behavior in a Priceline-Like Reverse Auction," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 51(3), pages 352-364, March.
    2. Xavier Gabaix & David Laibson, 2018. "Shrouded attributes, consumer myopia and information suppression in competitive markets," Chapters,in: Handbook of Behavioral Industrial Organization, chapter 3, pages 40-74 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    3. Hong, Han & Shum, Matthew, 2003. "Econometric models of asymmetric ascending auctions," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 112(2), pages 327-358, February.
    4. Milgrom,Paul, 2004. "Putting Auction Theory to Work," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521536721, June.
    5. Bajari, Patrick & Hortacsu, Ali, 2003. " The Winner's Curse, Reserve Prices, and Endogenous Entry: Empirical Insights from eBay Auctions," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 34(2), pages 329-355, Summer.
    6. Vincent Daniel R., 1995. "Bidding Off the Wall: Why Reserve Prices May Be Kept Secret," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 575-584, April.
    7. Ginger Zhe Jin & Andrew Kato, 2006. "Price, quality, and reputation: evidence from an online field experiment," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 37(4), pages 983-1005, December.
    8. Kosmopoulou, Georgia & De Silva, Dakshina G., 2007. "The effect of shill bidding upon prices: Experimental evidence," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 291-313, April.
    9. McCabe, Kevin A & Rassenti, Stephen J & Smith, Vernon L, 1990. "Auction Institutional Design: Theory and Behavior of Simultaneous Multiple-Unit Generalizations of the Dutch and English Auctions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(5), pages 1276-1283, December.
    10. Coppinger, Vicki M & Smith, Vernon L & Titus, Jon A, 1980. "Incentives and Behavior in English, Dutch and Sealed-Bid Auctions," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 18(1), pages 1-22, January.
    11. Grether, David M. & Plott, Charles R., 2009. "Sequencing strategies in large, competitive, ascending price automobile auctions: An experimental examination," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 75-88, August.
    12. repec:rje:randje:v:37:y:2006:i:4:p:983-1005 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Peter Cramton, 1997. "The FCC Spectrum Auctions: An Early Assessment," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 6(3), pages 431-495, September.
    14. Bernard Elyakime & Jean-Jacques Laffont & Patrice Loisel & Quang Vuong, 1994. "First-Price Sealed-Bid Auctions with Secret Reservation Prices," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, issue 34, pages 71-114.
    15. Krishna, Vijay, 2009. "Auction Theory," Elsevier Monographs, Elsevier, edition 2, number 9780123745071, July.
    16. Johannes Hörner & Nicolas Sahuguet, 2007. "Costly Signalling in Auctions -super-1," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 74(1), pages 173-206.
    17. Banks, Jeffrey & Olson, Mark & Porter, David & Rassenti, Stephen & Smith, Vernon, 2003. "Theory, experiment and the federal communications commission spectrum auctions," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 51(3), pages 303-350, July.
    18. David Lucking-Reiley, 1999. "Using Field Experiments to Test Equivalence between Auction Formats: Magic on the Internet," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(5), pages 1063-1080, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. David Ettinger & Fabio Michelucci, 2016. "Creating a winner’s curse via jump bids," Review of Economic Design, Springer;Society for Economic Design, vol. 20(3), pages 173-186, September.
    2. Omar Al-Ubaydli & John List, 2016. "Field Experiments in Markets," Artefactual Field Experiments j0002, The Field Experiments Website.
    3. repec:eee:gamebe:v:107:y:2018:i:c:p:93-108 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Ingebretsen Carlson, Jim & Wu, Tingting, 2018. "Shill Bidding and Information in Sequential Auctions: A Laboratory Study," Working Papers 2018:18, Lund University, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • D44 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Auctions
    • L62 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - Automobiles; Other Transportation Equipment; Related Parts and Equipment
    • L81 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Retail and Wholesale Trade; e-Commerce

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:aea:aejmic:v:7:y:2015:i:3:p:85-103. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Michael P. Albert). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/aeaaaea.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.