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Identification of standard auction models

  • Athey,S.
  • Haile,P.A.

    (University of Wisconsin-Madison, Social Systems Research Institute)

This paper presents new identification results for models of first-price, second-price, ascending (English), and descending (Dutch) auctions. We consider a general specification of the latent demand and information structure, nesting both private values and common values models, and allowing correlated types as well as ex ante asymmetry. We address identification of a series of nested models and derive testable restrictions enabling discrimination between models on the basis of observed data. The simplest model--symmetric independent private values--is nonparametrically identified even if only the transaction price from each auction is observed. For richer models, identification and testable restrictions may be obtained when additional information of one or more of the following types is available: (i) the identity of the winning bidder or other bidders; (ii) one or more bids in addition to the transaction price; (iii) exogenous variation in the number of bidders; (iv) bidder-specific covariates. While many private values (PV) models are nonparametrically identified and testable with commonly available data, identification of common values (CV) models requires stringent assumptions. Nonetheless, the PV model can be tested against the CV alternative, even when neither model is identified. Copyright The Econometric Society 2002.

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Paper provided by Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems in its series Working papers with number 13.

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Date of creation: 2000
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Handle: RePEc:att:wimass:200013
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  1. Guerre, E. & Perrigne, I. & Vuong, Q., 1995. "Nonparametric Estimation of First-Price Auctions," Papers 9504, Southern California - Department of Economics.
  2. Matt Shum & Phil Haile & Han Hong, 2003. "Nonparametric Tests for Common Values in First-Price Auctions," Economics Working Paper Archive 501, The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics.
  3. Paarsch, H.J., 1992. "Empirical Models of Auctions and an Application to British Columbian Timber Sales," UWO Department of Economics Working Papers 9212, University of Western Ontario, Department of Economics.
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  8. Robert Wilson, 1998. "Sequential equilibria of asymmetric ascending auctions: The case of log-normal distributions," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 12(2), pages 433-440.
  9. Richard Engelbrecht-Wiggans & John A. List & David H. Reiley, 2006. "Demand Reduction In Multi-Unit Auctions With Varying Numbers Of Bidders: Theory And Evidence From A Field Experiment ," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 47(1), pages 203-231, 02.
  10. McAfee, R Preston & McMillan, John, 1987. "Auctions and Bidding," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 25(2), pages 699-738, June.
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  12. Crandall, Robert W, 1998. "New Zealand Spectrum Policy: A Model for the United States?," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 41(2), pages 821-40, October.
  13. Balasubramanian, K. & Balakrishnan, N., 1994. "Equivalence of relations for order statistics for exchangeable and arbitrary cases," Statistics & Probability Letters, Elsevier, vol. 21(5), pages 405-407, December.
  14. Laffont, Jean-Jacques & Ossard, Herve & Vuong, Quang, 1995. "Econometrics of First-Price Auctions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 953-80, July.
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  21. Matthew Shum, 2000. "Nonparametric Tests for Common Values," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 1598, Econometric Society.
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  27. Paul Milgrom & Robert J. Weber, 1981. "A Theory of Auctions and Competitive Bidding," Discussion Papers 447R, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  28. Hendricks, K. & Paarsch, H.J., 1993. "A Survey of Recent Empirical Work Concerning Auctions," UWO Department of Economics Working Papers 9309, University of Western Ontario, Department of Economics.
  29. Li, Tong & Vuong, Quang, 1998. "Nonparametric Estimation of the Measurement Error Model Using Multiple Indicators," Journal of Multivariate Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 139-165, May.
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