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Auction Design for the Allocation of Emission Permits in the Presence of Market Power

  • Kjell Sunnevåg
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    To the extent that emission permits have been allocated using market mechanisms, this has been done using a sealed-bid auction design, typically with discriminatory prices. However, several authors have recommended the ascending auction format. Basically, two “competing” ascending auction designs have been suggested, the standard ascending auction (with clock or demand schedules), or an alternative ascending-clock implementation of Vickrey-pricing. The latter design was introduced as a response to problems of bid shading under the sealed-bid and the standard ascending auction format. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the allocation of permits under these two alternative mechanisms. The auction process and the resulting market outcome in the presence of oligopolistic competition are simulated. In this setting, it is not obvious that bid shading is the optimal strategy under the standard design, nor is it obvious that sincere bidding is the optimal strategy under the alternative ascending auction design. The alternative auction format makes it less costly to pursue a strategy to increase market shares through the acquisition of emission permits, thus increasing the competitor's costs, leading to overbidding as the optimal strategy. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 2003

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    Article provided by European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists in its journal Environmental and Resource Economics.

    Volume (Year): 26 (2003)
    Issue (Month): 3 (November)
    Pages: 385-400

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    Handle: RePEc:kap:enreec:v:26:y:2003:i:3:p:385-400
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    1. Hahn, Robert W, 1984. "Market Power and Transferable Property Rights," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 99(4), pages 753-65, November.
    2. Kerr, Suzi & Cramton, Peter, 1998. "Tradable Carbon Permit Auctions: How and Why to Auction Not Grandfather," Discussion Papers dp-98-34, Resources For the Future.
    3. Cramton, Peter, 1998. "Ascending auctions," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-5), pages 745-756, May.
    4. Hanley, Nick D & Moffatt, Ian, 1993. "Efficiency and Distributional Aspects of Market Mechanisms in the Control of Pollution: An Empirical Analysis," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 40(1), pages 69-87, February.
    5. Fershtman,C. & de Zeeuw,A., 1995. "Tradeable Emission Permits in Oligopoly," Papers 45-95, Tel Aviv - the Sackler Institute of Economic Studies.
    6. Eftichios Sartzetakis, 1997. "Tradeable emission permits regulations in the presence of imperfectly competitive product markets: Welfare implications," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 9(1), pages 65-81, January.
    7. Wilson, Robert, 1979. "Auctions of Shares," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 93(4), pages 675-89, November.
    8. Lawrence M. Ausubel & Peter Cramton, 1995. "Demand Reduction and Inefficiency in Multi-Unit Auctions," Papers of Peter Cramton 98wpdr, University of Maryland, Department of Economics - Peter Cramton, revised 22 Jul 2002.
    9. Malueg, David A., 1990. "Welfare consequences of emission credit trading programs," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 66-77, January.
    10. Lawrence M. Ausubel & Peter Cramton, 1997. "Auctioning Securities," Papers of Peter Cramton 98wpas, University of Maryland, Department of Economics - Peter Cramton, revised Mar 1998.
    11. V.V. Chari & Robert J. Weber, 1992. "How the U.S. Treasury should auction its debt," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Fall, pages 3-12.
    12. McAfee, R Preston & McMillan, John, 1987. "Auctions and Bidding," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 25(2), pages 699-738, June.
    13. repec:dgr:kubcen:199630 is not listed on IDEAS
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