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Selling Goods of Unknown Quality: Forward versus Spot Auctions

  • Isa E. Hafalir
  • Hadi Yektas

We consider an environment where the sale can take place so early that both the seller and the potential buyers have the same uncertainty about the quality of the good. We present a simple model that allows the seller to put the good for sale before or after this uncertainty is resolved, , namely via forward auction or spot auction, respectively. We solve for the equilibrium of these two auctions and then compare the resulting revenues. We also consider the revenue implications of the insurance in forward auctions.

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Paper provided by The University of Melbourne in its series Department of Economics - Working Papers Series with number 1091.

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Length: 13 pages
Date of creation: 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mlb:wpaper:1091
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Web page: http://www.economics.unimelb.edu.au
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  1. Owen Phillips & Dale Menkhaus & Joseph Krogmeier, 2001. "Laboratory Behavior in Spot and Forward Auction Markets," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 4(3), pages 243-256, December.
  2. Steven A. Matthews, 1985. "Comparing Auctions for Risk Averse Buyers: A Buyer's Pointof View," Discussion Papers 664R, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  3. J. Riley & E. Maskin, 1981. "Optimal Auctions with Risk Averse Buyers," Working papers 311, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  4. Shimon Kogan & John Morgan, . "Securities Auctions under Moral Hazard: An Experimental Study," GSIA Working Papers 2006-E23, Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business.
  5. 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.
  6. Amos Tversky & Daniel Kahneman, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Levine's Working Paper Archive 7656, David K. Levine.
  7. Gregory Lewis, 2011. "Asymmetric Information, Adverse Selection and Online Disclosure: The Case of eBay Motors," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(4), pages 1535-46, June.
  8. Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1991. "Loss Aversion in Riskless Choice: A Reference-Dependent Model," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(4), pages 1039-61, November.
  9. Tanga McDaniel & Neuhoff, K., 2002. "Auctions to gas transmission access: The British experience," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 0234, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
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