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Ignorance promotes competition: An auction model with endogenous private valuations

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Abstract

We study a situation in which an auctioneer wishes to sell an object to one of N risk-neutral bidders with heterogeneous preferences. The auctioneer does not know bidders’ preferences but has private information about the characteristics of the ob ject, and must decide how much information to reveal prior to the auction. We show that the auctioneer has incentives to release less information than would be efficient and that the amount of information released increases with the level of competition (as measured by the number of bidders). Furthermore, in a perfectly competitive market the auctioneer would provide the efficient level of information.

Suggested Citation

  • Juan José Ganuza, 2003. "Ignorance promotes competition: An auction model with endogenous private valuations," Economics Working Papers 671, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  • Handle: RePEc:upf:upfgen:671
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Vasiliki Skreta, 2011. "On the informed seller problem: optimal information disclosure," Review of Economic Design, Springer;Society for Economic Design, vol. 15(1), pages 1-36, March.
    2. Joaquín Coleff & Daniel Garcia, 2017. "Information Provision in Procurement Auctions," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 19(2), pages 426-444, April.
    3. Farnia, Farnoush & Frayret, Jean-Marc & LeBel, Luc & Beaudry, Catherine, 2013. "Multiple-round timber auction design and simulation," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 146(1), pages 129-141.
    4. Dewatripont, Mathias & Legros, Patrick, 2005. "Public-private partnerships: contract design and risk transfer," EIB Papers 5/2005, European Investment Bank, Economics Department.
    5. Tian, Guoqiang & Xiao, Mingjun, 2007. "Endogenous Information Acquisition on Opponents' Valuations in Multidimensional First Price Auctions," MPRA Paper 41214, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Jan 2010.
    6. Simon Board, 2009. "Revealing information in auctions: the allocation effect," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 38(1), pages 125-135, January.
    7. Li, Shengyu & Tian, Guoqiang, 2008. "Equilibria in Second Price Auctions with Information Acquisition," MPRA Paper 41210, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Olivier Compte & Andrew Postlewaite, 2010. "Simple Auctions, Second Version," PIER Working Paper Archive 13-017, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania, revised 01 Apr 2013.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Auctions; private values; asymmetric information;

    JEL classification:

    • D44 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Auctions
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness

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