Efficiency in Second-Price Auctions: A New Look at Old Data
The experimental economics literature on second-price sealed-bid private value auctions has established that subjects typically bid more than their value, despite the fact that value bidding is a dominant strategy in such auctions. Moreover, the laboratory evidence shows that subjects do not learn to bid their values as they gain more experience. In the present paper, we re-examine the second-price auction data from Kagel and Levinâ€™s (1993) classic paper. We find that auction efficiency is rising over time, even though the frequency of overbidding is unchanged. We argue that the rise in efficiency is due to a decline in the variability of overbidding. This is consistent with subjects learning to bid more like each other.
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- Kagel, John H & Harstad, Ronald M & Levin, Dan, 1987. "Information Impact and Allocation Rules in Auctions with Affiliated Private Values: A Laboratory Study," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(6), pages 1275-1304, November.
- Rodney Garratt & John Wooders, 2010.
"Efficiency in Second-Price Auctions: A New Look at Old Data,"
Review of Industrial Organization,
Springer, vol. 37(1), pages 43-50, August.
- Garratt, Rod & Wooders, John, 2004. "Efficiency in Second-Price Auctions: A New Look at Old Data," University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series qt5d86p46d, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
- Mitzkewitz, Michael & Nagel, Rosemarie, 1993. "Experimental Results on Ultimatum Games with Incomplete Information," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer, vol. 22(2), pages 171-98.
- Bergstrom, Carl T. & Bergstrom, Ted C & Garratt, Rod, 2009. "Ideal Bootstrapping and Exact Recombination: Applications to Auction Experiments," University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series qt4xb7454q, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
- Mehta, Judith & Starmer, Chris & Sugden, Robert, 1994. "The Nature of Salience: An Experimental Investigation of Pure Coordination Games," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 658-73, June.
- Kagel, J.H. & Levin, D., 1988.
"Independent Private Value Auctions: Bidder Behavior In First, Second And Third-Price Auctions With Varying Numbers Of Bidders,"
13, Houston - Department of Economics.
- Kagel, John H & Levin, Dan, 1993. "Independent Private Value Auctions: Bidder Behaviour in First-, Second- and Third-Price Auctions with Varying Numbers of Bidders," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 103(419), pages 868-79, July.
- Ronald Harstad, 2000. "Dominant Strategy Adoption and Bidders' Experience with Pricing Rules," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 3(3), pages 261-280, December.
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