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Railcar Auctions for Grain Shipments: A Strategic Analysis


  • Wilson William W.

    (North Dakota State University, Fargo, North Dakota, USA)

  • Dahl Bruce L.

    (North Dakota State University, Fargo, North Dakota, USA)


Many of the North American railroads have introduced differentiated services for grain shipments in the past decade. Most interesting have been innovations in guaranteed railcar service which have evolved since their inception. In most cases, pricing and allocation of these services have used some type of bidding mechanism. This paper explores the strategic implications of these mechanisms for the grain shipping industry. A model was developed to analyze the effects of critical variables on equilibrium bids. The paper extends the literature on pricing and car allocation mechanisms whereby auctions are used as an alternative to negotiations and posted-prices in the rail transport sector.

Suggested Citation

  • Wilson William W. & Dahl Bruce L., 2005. "Railcar Auctions for Grain Shipments: A Strategic Analysis," Journal of Agricultural & Food Industrial Organization, De Gruyter, vol. 3(2), pages 1-29, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:bjafio:v:3:y:2005:i:2:n:3

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Wilson, William W., 1989. "Posted Prices and Auctions in Rail Grain Transportation," Statistical Series Reports 165918, North Dakota State University, Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics.
    2. Paul Klemperer, 2004. "Auctions: Theory and Practice," Online economics textbooks, SUNY-Oswego, Department of Economics, number auction1.
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    Cited by:

    1. Fan, Lei & Wilson, William W. & Dahl, Bruce, 2015. "Risk analysis in port competition for containerized imports," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 245(3), pages 743-753.
    2. Sparger, Adam & Prater, Marvin E., 2012. "A Comprehensive Rail Rate Index for Grain," 53rd Annual Transportation Research Forum, Tampa, Florida, March 15-17, 2012 207121, Transportation Research Forum.
    3. Sparger, Adam & Prater, Marvin, 2012. "A Comprehensive Rail Rate Index for Grain," Journal of the Transportation Research Forum, Transportation Research Forum, vol. 51(2).

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