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Auctions with Resale When Private Values Are Uncertain: Evidence from the Lab and Field

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  • Andreas Lange
  • John A. List
  • Michael K. Price

Abstract

Auction theory represents one of the richest areas of research in economics over the past three decades. Yet, whether, and to what extent, the introduction of secondary resale markets influences bidding behavior in sealed bid first-price auctions remains under researched. This study begins by examining field data from a unique data set that includes nearly 3,000 auctions (over 10,000 individual bids) for cutting rights of standing timber in British Columbia from 1996-2000. In comparing bidding patterns across agents who are likely to have resale opportunities with those who likely do not, we find evidence that is consistent with theory. Critical evaluation of the reduced-form bidding model, however, reveals that sharp tests of the theoretical predictions are not possible because several other differences may exist across these bidder types. We therefore use a laboratory experiment to examine if the resale opportunity by itself can have the predicted theoretical effect. We find that while it does have the predicted effect, a theoretical model based on risk-averse bidders explains the overall data patterns more accurately than a model based on risk-neutral bidders. Beyond testing theory, the paper highlights the inferential power of combining naturally occurring data with laboratory data.

Suggested Citation

  • Andreas Lange & John A. List & Michael K. Price, 2010. "Auctions with Resale When Private Values Are Uncertain: Evidence from the Lab and Field," NBER Working Papers 16360, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16360
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Saral, Krista Jabs, 2012. "Speculation and demand reduction in English clock auctions with resale," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 416-431.
    2. Banerjee, Prasenjit & Shogren, Jason F., 2014. "Bidding behavior given point and interval values in a second-price auction," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 97(C), pages 126-137.
    3. Pagnozzi, Marco & Saral, Krista J., 2016. "Entry by Successful Speculators in Auctions with Resale," MPRA Paper 70022, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Marco Pagnozzi & Krista J. Saral, 2015. "Demand Reduction in Multi-Object Auctions with Resale: An Experimental Analysis," CSEF Working Papers 416, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
    5. Miguel A. Fonseca & Francesco Giovannoni & Miltiadis Makris, 2016. "Auctions with external incentives: Experimental evidence," Discussion Papers 1602, Exeter University, Department of Economics.
    6. Lorentziadis, Panos L., 2016. "Optimal bidding in auctions from a game theory perspective," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 248(2), pages 347-371.
    7. Max Albert & Andreas Hildenbrand, 2016. "Industrial Organization and Experimental Economics: How to Learn from Laboratory Experiments," Homo Oeconomicus: Journal of Behavioral and Institutional Economics, Springer, vol. 33(1), pages 135-156, August.
    8. Pagnozzi, Marco & Saral, Krista J., 2015. "Efficiency in Auctions with (Failed) Resale," MPRA Paper 63962, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Filiz-Ozbay, Emel & Lopez-Vargas, Kristian & Ozbay, Erkut Y., 2015. "Multi-object auctions with resale: Theory and experiment," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 89(C), pages 1-16.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C9 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments
    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles
    • D44 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Auctions

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