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A note on the inefficiency of bidding over the price of a share


  • Athanassoglou, Stergios
  • Brams, Steven J.
  • Sethuraman, Jay


We study the problem of dissolving a partnership when agents have unequal endowments. Agents bid on the price of the entire partnership. The highest bidder is awarded the partnership and buys out her partners' shares at a per-unit price that is a function of the two highest bids. We show that there exists no price-setting mechanism satisfying certain mild regularity properties that is ex-post efficient, for any common prior of valuations. This result sharply contrasts the equal-endowment case in which efficient dissolution of the sort we are examining is possible through a simple k-double auction, as suggested by Cramton et al. (1987).

Suggested Citation

  • Athanassoglou, Stergios & Brams, Steven J. & Sethuraman, Jay, 2010. "A note on the inefficiency of bidding over the price of a share," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 60(3), pages 191-195, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:matsoc:v:60:y:2010:i:3:p:191-195

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. de Frutos, M. Angeles, 2000. "Asymmetric Price-Benefits Auctions," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 48-71, October.
    2. Jeremy Bulow & Ming Huang & Paul Klemperer, 1999. "Toeholds and Takeovers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(3), pages 427-454, June.
    3. Richard R. W. Brooks & Claudia M. Landeo & Kathryn E. Spier, 2010. "Trigger happy or gun shy? Dissolving common-value partnerships with Texas shootouts," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 41(4), pages 649-673.
    4. Myerson, Roger B. & Satterthwaite, Mark A., 1983. "Efficient mechanisms for bilateral trading," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 265-281, April.
    5. Cramton, Peter & Gibbons, Robert & Klemperer, Paul, 1987. "Dissolving a Partnership Efficiently," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(3), pages 615-632, May.
    6. Fieseler, Karsten & Kittsteiner, Thomas & Moldovanu, Benny, 2003. "Partnerships, lemons, and efficient trade," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 113(2), pages 223-234, December.
    7. Kittsteiner, Thomas, 2003. "Partnerships and double auctions with interdependent valuations," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 54-76, July.
    8. Preston McAfee, R., 1992. "Amicable divorce: Dissolving a partnership with simple mechanisms," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 56(2), pages 266-293, April.
    9. Engelbrecht-Wiggans Richard, 1994. "Auctions with Price-Proportional Benefits to Bidders," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 6(3), pages 339-346, May.
    10. John Morgan, 2004. "Dissolving a partnership (un)fairly," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 23(4), pages 909-923, May.
    11. Groves, Theodore, 1973. "Incentives in Teams," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(4), pages 617-631, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Wasser, Cédric, 2013. "Bilateral k+1-price auctions with asymmetric shares and values," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 82(C), pages 350-368.


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