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Heterogeneous bids in auctions with rational and markdown bidders - Theory and Experiment


  • Oliver Kirchkamp

    () (Universität Jena, School of Economics)

  • J. Philipp Reiß

    () (Maastricht University, Economics Department)


We present results from a series of experiments that allow us to measure overbidding and, in particular, underbidding in first-price auctions. We investigate how the amount of underbidding depends on seemingly innocent parameters of the experimental setup. To structure our data we present and test a theory of constant markdown bids. While a fraction of bidders can be well described by Bayesian Nash equilibrium bids, a larger fraction seems to either use constant markdown bids or seems to rationally optimise against a population where some members use markdown bids and some are rational.

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  • Oliver Kirchkamp & J. Philipp Reiß, 2008. "Heterogeneous bids in auctions with rational and markdown bidders - Theory and Experiment," Jena Economic Research Papers 2008-066, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
  • Handle: RePEc:jrp:jrpwrp:2008-066

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    Cited by:

    1. Roberto Cervone & Stefano Galavotti & Marco LiCalzi, 2009. "Symmetric Equilibria in Double Auctions with Markdown Buyers and Markup Sellers," Working Papers 187, Department of Applied Mathematics, Università Ca' Foscari Venezia.
    2. Jason Shachat & Lijia Wei, 2013. "Discrete Rule Learning and the Bidding of the Sexes," Working Papers 1302, Xiamen Unversity, The Wang Yanan Institute for Studies in Economics, Finance and Economics Experimental Laboratory, revised 02 Jul 2013.
    3. Jason Shachat & Lijia Wei, 2012. "Procuring Commodities: First-Price Sealed-Bid or English Auctions?," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 31(2), pages 317-333, March.
    4. Philippe Gillen & Alexander Rasch & Achim Wambach & Peter Werner, 2016. "Bid pooling in reverse multi-unit Dutch auctions: an experimental investigation," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 81(4), pages 511-534, November.
    5. repec:wyi:journl:002158 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Tobias Scheffel & Georg Ziegler & Martin Bichler, 2012. "On the impact of package selection in combinatorial auctions: an experimental study in the context of spectrum auction design," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 15(4), pages 667-692, December.

    More about this item


    Auction; Experiment; Overbidding; Underbidding; Risk-Aversion;

    JEL classification:

    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • D44 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Auctions

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