Uniform vs. Discriminatory Auctions with Variable Supply - Experimental Evidence
In the variable supply auction considered here, the seller decides how many costumers with unit demand to serve after observing their bids. Bidders are uncertain about the seller's cost. We experimentally investigate whether a uniform or a discriminatory price auction is better for the seller in this setting. Exactly as predicted by theory, it turns out that the uniform price auction produces substantially higher bids, and consequently yields higher revenues and profits for the seller. Somewhat surprisingly but again predicted by theory, it also yields a higher number of transactions, which makes it the more efficient auction format.
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