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Collusion Without Conspiracy: An Experimental Study of One-Sided Auctions

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  • Katerina Sherstyuk

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Abstract

The study investigates collusion-nonfacilitating features of one-sided auctions. We report the results of oral nondescending bid auction experiments in which the strict bid improvement rule was absent, and compare them with the results of sealed bid auction experiments. In the sealed bid experiments the outcomes converged to the competitive equilibrium. In the oral auctions, collusive outcomes emerged and were sustained with bidders using bid matching strategies. We conclude that oral auctions provide opportunities for tacit coordination and collusion enforcement that do not exist under the sealed bid. Therefore, the strict bid improvement rule becomes critical for breaking collusion. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 1999

Suggested Citation

  • Katerina Sherstyuk, 1999. "Collusion Without Conspiracy: An Experimental Study of One-Sided Auctions," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 2(1), pages 59-75, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:expeco:v:2:y:1999:i:1:p:59-75
    DOI: 10.1023/A:1009929832148
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Isaac, R. Mark & Walker, James M., 1985. "Information and conspiracy in sealed bid auctions," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 6(2), pages 139-159, June.
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    3. Grether, David M & Plott, Charles R, 1984. "The Effects of Market Practices in Oligopolistic Markets: An Experimental Examination of the Ethyl Case," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 22(4), pages 479-507, October.
    4. Graham, Daniel A & Marshall, Robert C & Richard, Jean-Francois, 1990. "Differential Payments within a Bidder Coalition and the Shapley Value," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(3), pages 493-510, June.
    5. Isaac, R. Mark & Ramey, Valerie & Williams, Arlington W., 1984. "The effects of market organization on conspiracies in restraint of trade," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 191-222, June.
    6. Joseph E. Stiglitz & G. Frank Mathewson (ed.), 1986. "New Developments in the Analysis of Market Structure," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262690934, May.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Sherstyuk, Katerina, 2008. "Some Results on Anti-Competitive Behavior in Multi-Unit Ascending Price Auctions," Handbook of Experimental Economics Results, Elsevier.
    2. Sherstyuk, Katerina, 1999. "Team selection with asymmetric agents," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 38(4), pages 421-452, April.
    3. Sherstyuk, Katerina, 2002. "Collusion in private value ascending price auctions," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 177-195, June.
    4. Anthony M. Kwasnica & Katerina Sherstyuk, 2001. "Collusion via Signaling in Multiple Object Auctions with Complementarities- An Experimental Test," Working Papers 200102, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Economics.
    5. Jin Li & Charles R. Plott, 2009. "Tacit Collusion In Auctions And Conditions For Its Facilitation And Prevention: Equilibrium Selection In Laboratory Experimental Markets," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 47(3), pages 425-448, July.
    6. Martin Sefton & Ping Zhang, 2014. "Divisible-good uniform price auctions: The role of allocation rules and communication among bidders," Research in Experimental Economics,in: Experiments in Financial Economics, volume 16, pages 53-86 Emerald Publishing Ltd.
    7. Anthony M. Kwasnica & Katerina Sherstyuk, 2013. "Multiunit Auctions," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(3), pages 461-490, July.
    8. Philippe Gillen & Alexander Rasch & Achim Wambach & Peter Werner, 2016. "Bid pooling in reverse multi-unit Dutch auctions: an experimental investigation," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 81(4), pages 511-534, November.
    9. Francesco Feri & Anita Gantner & Wolfgang Höchtl & Rupert Sausgruber, 2013. "The pivotal mechanism revisited: some evidence on group manipulation," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 16(1), pages 23-51, March.
    10. Alexander L. Brown & Charles R. Plott & Heidi J. Sullivan, 2009. "Collusion Facilitating And Collusion Breaking Power Of Simultaneous Ascending And Descending Price Auctions," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 47(3), pages 395-424, July.
    11. Hu, Audrey & Offerman, Theo & Onderstal, Sander, 2011. "Fighting collusion in auctions: An experimental investigation," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 84-96, January.
    12. Almeida, Vinicio de Souza e & Leal, Ricardi Pereira Câmara, 2015. "Análise experimental conjunta do comportamento do investidor em IPOs," RAE - Revista de Administração de Empresas, FGV-EAESP Escola de Administração de Empresas de São Paulo (Brazil), vol. 55(1), January.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    auction experiments; tacit collusion;

    JEL classification:

    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • D44 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Auctions

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