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Super-Experienced Bidders In First-Price Common-Value Auctions: Rules Of Thumb, Nash Equilibrium Bidding, And The Winner'S Curse


  • John H. Kagel
  • Jean-Francois Richard


Super-experienced bidders have learned to overcome the winner's curse but still earn less than 50% of Nash equilibrium profits. Subjects deviate from the complicated Nash strategy, employing piece-wise-linear bid functions that are capable, in principle, of generating an equilibrium with average profits at or above the Nash benchmark. Thus, limited computational abilities alone cannot account for the reduced earnings. Further, subjects are far from best responding within this family of piecewise-linear bid functions. Alternative factors contributing to these reduced earnings are explored. © 2001 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Suggested Citation

  • John H. Kagel & Jean-Francois Richard, 2001. "Super-Experienced Bidders In First-Price Common-Value Auctions: Rules Of Thumb, Nash Equilibrium Bidding, And The Winner'S Curse," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 83(3), pages 408-419, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:83:y:2001:i:3:p:408-419

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Weili Ding & Steven F. Lehrer, 2000. "Using Performance Incentives to Reward the Value Added by Educators: Theory and Evidence from China," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 1519, Econometric Society.
    2. Vincent P. Crawford & Nagore Iriberri, 2007. "Level-k Auctions: Can a Nonequilibrium Model of Strategic Thinking Explain the Winner's Curse and Overbidding in Private-Value Auctions?," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 75(6), pages 1721-1770, November.
    3. Lorentziadis, Panos L., 2016. "Optimal bidding in auctions from a game theory perspective," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 248(2), pages 347-371.
    4. Wei-Shiun Chang & Timothy C. Salmon & Krista J. Saral, 2016. "Procurement Auctions With Renegotiation And Wealth Constraints," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 54(3), pages 1684-1704, July.
    5. Ham, John C. & Kagel, John H. & Lehrer, Steven F., 2005. "Randomization, endogeneity and laboratory experiments: the role of cash balances in private value auctions," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 125(1-2), pages 175-205.
    6. Wouter van den Bos & Jian Li & Tatiana Lau & Eric Maskin & Jonathan D. Cohen & P. Read Montague & Samuel M. McClure, 2008. "The value of victory: social origins of the winner's curse in common value auctions," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 3(7), pages 483-492, October.
    7. John H. Kagel & Colin M. Campbell & Dan Levin, 1999. "The Winner's Curse and Public Information in Common Value Auctions: Reply," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(1), pages 325-334, March.
    8. Marco Casari & John C. Ham & John H. Kagel, 2007. "Selection Bias, Demographic Effects, and Ability Effects in Common Value Auction Experiments," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(4), pages 1278-1304, September.
    9. Richard, Jean-François, 2000. "Conférence François-Albert Angers (1999). Enchères : théorie économique et réalité," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 76(2), pages 173-198, juin.
    10. Dan Levin & James Peck & Asen Ivanov, 2016. "Separating Bayesian Updating from Non-Probabilistic Reasoning: An Experimental Investigation," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 8(2), pages 39-60, May.
    11. Fiala, Nathan, 2015. "Skills in the marketplace: Market efficiency, social orientation, and ability in a field-based experiment," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 120(C), pages 174-188.
    12. Lorentziadis, Panos L., 2012. "Optimal bidding in auctions of mixed populations of bidders," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 217(3), pages 653-663.
    13. Brünner, Tobias & Becker, Alice, 2013. "Bidding in common value fair division games," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79810, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.

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