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Identification and Estimation in Highway Procurement Auctions under Unobserved Auction Heterogeneity

  • Elena Krasnokutskaya

    ()

    (Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania)

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    This paper proposes a semi-parametric method to uncover the distribution of bidders’ private information in the market for highway procurement when unobserved auction heterogeneity is present. I derive sufficient conditions under which the model is identified and show that the estimation procedure produces uniformly consistent estimators of the distributions in question. The estimation procedure is applied to data from Michigan highway procurement auctions. I estimate that 75% of the variation in bidders’ costs may be attributed to the factors known to all bidders and only 25% may be generated by private information. My results suggest that failing to account for unobserved auction heterogeneity may lead to overestimating uncertainty that bidders face when submitting their bids. As a result both inefficiency of the auction mechanism and mark-ups over the bidders’ costs may be overestimated.

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    File URL: http://economics.sas.upenn.edu/system/files/working-papers/05-006.pdf
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    Paper provided by Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania in its series PIER Working Paper Archive with number 05-006.

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    Length: 69 pages
    Date of creation: 24 May 2004
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:pen:papers:05-006
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    1. Han Hong, 2000. "Increasing Competition and the Winner's Curse: Evidence from Procurement," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 1628, Econometric Society.
    2. Patrick Bajari & Lixin Ye, 2001. "Deciding Between Competition and Collusion," Working Papers 01008, Stanford University, Department of Economics.
    3. Donald, Stephen G & Paarsch, Harry J, 1993. "Piecewise Pseudo-maximum Likelihood Estimation in Empirical Models of Auctions," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 34(1), pages 121-48, February.
    4. Li, Tong & Vuong, Quang, 1998. "Nonparametric Estimation of the Measurement Error Model Using Multiple Indicators," Journal of Multivariate Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 139-165, May.
    5. Emmanuel Guerre & Isabelle Perrigne & Quang Vuong, 2000. "Optimal Nonparametric Estimation of First-Price Auctions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(3), pages 525-574, May.
    6. Han Hong & Matthew Shum, 2002. "Increasing Competition and the Winner's Curse: Evidence from Procurement," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(4), pages 871-898.
    7. 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.
    8. Wolfgang Hardle & Oliver Linton, 1994. "Applied Nonparametric Methods," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1069, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
    9. Porter, Robert H & Zona, J Douglas, 1993. "Detection of Bid Rigging in Procurement Auctions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 518-38, June.
    10. Susan Athey & Philip A. Haile, 2002. "Identification of Standard Auction Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(6), pages 2107-2140, November.
    11. Hendricks, Kenneth & Porter, Robert H, 1988. "An Empirical Study of an Auction with Asymmetric Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(5), pages 865-83, December.
    12. Maskin, Eric & Riley, John, 2000. "Equilibrium in Sealed High Bid Auctions," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(3), pages 439-54, July.
    13. Laffont, Jean-Jacques & Ossard, Hervé & Vuong, Quang, 1991. "Econometrics of First-Price Auctions," IDEI Working Papers 7, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
    14. Li, Tong & Perrigne, Isabelle & Vuong, Quang, 2000. "Conditionally independent private information in OCS wildcat auctions," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 98(1), pages 129-161, September.
    15. Mireia Jofre-Bonet & Martin Pesendorfer, 2003. "Estimation of a Dynamic Auction Game," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(5), pages 1443-1489, 09.
    16. Lebrun, Bernard, 1999. "First Price Auctions in the Asymmetric N Bidder Case," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 40(1), pages 125-42, February.
    17. Donald, S.G. & Paarsch, H.J., 1993. "Identification, Estimation, and Testing in Empirical Models of Auction Within the Independent Private Values Paradigm," UWO Department of Economics Working Papers 9319, University of Western Ontario, Department of Economics.
    18. Laffont, Jean-Jacques & Vuong, Quang, 1996. "Structural Analysis of Auction Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 414-20, May.
    19. Isabelle Perrigne & Quang Vuong, 1999. "Structural Econometrics of First-price Auctions: A Survey of Methods," Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics/Revue canadienne d'agroeconomie, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society/Societe canadienne d'agroeconomie, vol. 47(3), pages 203-223, November.
    20. Vuong, Q. & Laffont, J.J. & Elyakime, B. & Loisel, P., 1995. "Auctioning and Bargaining: An Econometric Study of Timber Auctions with Secret Reservation Prices," Papers 9502, Southern California - Department of Economics.
    21. Maskin, Eric & Riley, John, 2000. "Asymmetric Auctions," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(3), pages 413-38, July.
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