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A Comparison of Multiple-Unit All-Pay and Winner-Pay Auctions Under Incomplete Information

  • Yasar Barut

    (Rice University, USA)

  • Dan Kovenock

    (Purdue University, USA)

  • Charles N. Noussair

    (Purdue University, USA)

This article examines the properties of independent-private-value all-pay and winner-pay auctions when there are multiple units sold. We study bidding behavior, efficiency, and revenue in a set of 23 experimental sessions. Our data show that the all-pay auction and the winner-pay auction are empirically revenue equivalent, though both yield higher revenue than the risk neutral Bayesian equilibrium. Our evidence also suggests that the winner-pay auction is more likely to lead to a Pareto-efficient allocation than the all-pay auction. Copyright Economics Department of the University of Pennsylvania and the Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association

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Article provided by Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association in its journal International Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 43 (2002)
Issue (Month): 3 (August)
Pages: 675-708

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Handle: RePEc:ier:iecrev:v:43:y:2002:i:3:p:675-708
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  1. Holt, Charles A, Jr & Sherman, Roger, 1982. "Waiting-Line Auctions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(2), pages 280-94, April.
  2. Vijay Krishna & John Morgan, 1994. "An Analysis of the War of Attrition and the All-Pay Auction," Game Theory and Information 9409002, EconWPA.
  3. Potters, Jan & de Vries, Casper G. & van Winden, Frans, 1998. "An experimental examination of rational rent-seeking," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 14(4), pages 783-800, November.
  4. Harris, Milton & Raviv, Artur, 1981. "Allocation Mechanisms and the Design of Auctions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(6), pages 1477-99, November.
  5. Douglas Davis & Robert Reilly, 1998. "Do too many cooks always spoil the stew? An experimental analysis of rent-seeking and the role of a strategic buyer," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 95(1), pages 89-115, April.
  6. Erwin Amann & Wolfgang Leininger, 1995. "Expected revenue of all-pay and first-price sealed-bid auctions with affiliated signals," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 61(3), pages 273-279, October.
  7. Roger B. Myerson, 1978. "Optimal Auction Design," Discussion Papers 362, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  8. Glazer, Amihai & Hassin, Refael, 1988. "Optimal Contests," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 26(1), pages 133-43, January.
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