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How (Not) to Run Auctions: The European 3G Telecom Auctions

  • Paul Klemperer

There were enormous differences in the revenues from the European third generation (3G, or UMTS) mobile-phone license auctions, from 20 Euros per capita in Switzerland to 650 Euros per capita in the U.K., though the values of the licences sold were similar. Poor auction designs in some countries facilitated collusion between firms and failed to attract entrants. The sequencing of the auctions was also crucial. We discuss the auctions in the U.K., Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, Greece and Denmark.

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File URL: http://www.nuff.ox.ac.uk/economics/papers/2002/w5/runauction.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Oxford, Department of Economics in its series Economics Series Working Papers with number 2002-W05.

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Date of creation: 01 Nov 2001
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Handle: RePEc:oxf:wpaper:2002-w05
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  1. Cramton, Peter & Gibbons, Robert & Klemperer, Paul, 1987. "Dissolving a Partnership Efficiently," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(3), pages 615-32, May.
  2. Klemperer, Paul, 1999. " Auction Theory: A Guide to the Literature," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 13(3), pages 227-86, July.
  3. Börgers, Tilman & Dustmann, Christian, 2001. "Strange Bids: Bidding Behaviour in the United Kingdom's Third Generation Spectrum Auction," CEPR Discussion Papers 3072, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Klemperer, Paul, 2000. "What Really Matters in Auction Design," CEPR Discussion Papers 2581, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Elmar G. Wolfstetter, 2001. "The Swiss UMTS Spectrum Auction Flop: Bad Luck or Bad Design," CESifo Working Paper Series 534, CESifo Group Munich.
  6. Milgrom, Paul R & Weber, Robert J, 1982. "A Theory of Auctions and Competitive Bidding," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(5), pages 1089-1122, September.
  7. Paul Klemperer (ed.), 2000. "The Economic Theory of Auctions," Books, Edward Elgar, volume 0, number 1669, December.
  8. Jeremy Bulow & Ming Huang & Paul Klemperer, 1999. "Toeholds and Takeovers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(3), pages 427-454, June.
  9. Beggs, A. & Graddy, K., 1996. "Declining Values and the Afternoon Effect: Evidence from Art Auctions," Economics Series Working Papers 99184, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  10. Paul Klemperer, 2000. "Why Every Economist Should Learn Some Auction Theory," Microeconomics 0004009, EconWPA.
  11. Ashenfelter, Orley, 1989. "How Auctions Work for Wine and Art," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 3(3), pages 23-36, Summer.
  12. Plott, Charles R. & Salmon, Timothy, 2002. "The Simultaneous, Ascending Auction: Dynamics of Price Adjustment in Experiments and in the U.K. 3G Spectrum Auction," Working Papers 1155, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  13. Klemperer, Paul, 2003. "Using and Abusing Economic Theory," CEPR Discussion Papers 3813, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. John Cable & Andrew Henley & Kevin Holland, 2002. "Pot of gold or winner's curse? An event study of the auctions of 3G mobile telephone licences in the UK," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 23(4), pages 447-462, December.
  15. Ken Binmore & Paul Klemperer, 2002. "The Biggest Auction Ever: the Sale of the British 3G Telecom Licences," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(478), pages C74-C96, March.
  16. Veronika Grimm & Frank Riedel & Elmar G. Wolfstetter, 2001. "The Third Generation (UMTS) Spectrum Auction in Germany," CESifo Working Paper Series 584, CESifo Group Munich.
  17. Myerson, Roger B. & Satterthwaite, Mark A., 1983. "Efficient mechanisms for bilateral trading," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 265-281, April.
  18. Klemperer, Paul, 1998. "Auctions with almost common values: The 'Wallet Game' and its applications," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-5), pages 757-769, May.
  19. Ballard, Charles L & Shoven, John B & Whalley, John, 1985. "General Equilibrium Computations of the Marginal Welfare Costs of Taxes in the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(1), pages 128-38, March.
  20. Bikhchandani, Sushil, 1988. "Reputation in repeated second-price auctions," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 97-119, October.
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