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The Competitive Effect in Bonus Bidding: New Evidence


  • Otis W. Gilley
  • Gordon V. Karels


One of the major unsettled questions in the study of competitive bidding concerns the impact of additional competition in auctions on the optimal bid levels of competing firms. Numerous theoretical and simulation studies suggest an inverse relationship between the expected number of competitors and the bid level of a particular firm in sealed bid auctions involving objects of uncertain value. The few empirical studies that have been done contradict this assertion. In this article, we address this issue by pointing out a serious statistical defect in previous empirical work and by reestimating a bid level equation by using a more appropriate technique. New evidence is provided which reconciles the differences between previous empirical results and the major predictions of the widely accepted bidding theory models. The new results presented here support the conclusions of the theoretical studies.

Suggested Citation

  • Otis W. Gilley & Gordon V. Karels, 1981. "The Competitive Effect in Bonus Bidding: New Evidence," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 12(2), pages 637-648, Autumn.
  • Handle: RePEc:rje:bellje:v:12:y:1981:i:autumn:p:637-648

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    Cited by:

    1. Yusuke Matsuki, "undated". "A Distribution-Free Test of Monotonicity with an Application to Auctions," Working Papers e110, Tokyo Center for Economic Research.
    2. Bruce L. Alford & Otis W. Gilley & Charles M. Wood & Obinna Obilo, 2017. "“No sale” items in auctions: do they really matter?," Marketing Letters, Springer, vol. 28(1), pages 155-168, March.
    3. Martin Schmidt, 2015. "Price Determination in Public Procurement: A Game Theory Approach," European Financial and Accounting Journal, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 2015(1).
    4. Iledare, Omowumi O. & Pulsipher, Allan G., 2007. "Joint bidding restriction policy for selective E&P firms in the US Gulf of Mexico OCS: How persuasive is its effectiveness?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(6), pages 3126-3133, June.
    5. Hill, Jonathan B. & Shneyerov, Artyom, 2013. "Are there common values in first-price auctions? A tail-index nonparametric test," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 174(2), pages 144-164.
    6. Jakub Kastl & Ali Hortacsu, 2007. "Testing for Common Valuation in Treasury Bills Auctions," 2007 Meeting Papers 222, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    7. Laffont, Jean-Jacques, 1997. "Game theory and empirical economics: The case of auction data 1," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 1-35, January.
    8. Dicke, Hugo & Foders, Federico, 1985. "Die Bedeutung internationaler Organisationen für die Nutzung von Ressourcen im Gemeineigentum: das Beispiel des Fischbestandes der Meere," Kiel Working Papers 222, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).

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