Investment Incentives in Auctions: An Experiment
We experimentally analyze first and second price auctions where one bidder can achieve a comparative advantage by investment prior to the auction. We find that, as predicted by theory, bidders invest more often prior to second price auctions than prior to first price auctions. In both auction formats bidding is more aggressive than the equilibrium prediction. However, bidding is closer to equilibrium than in control treatments where the comparative advantage is exogenous.
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