This paper investigates the stochastic properties of the first price and second price winning bids in auctions with risk neutral bidders with independent and identically distributed valuations. In such an environment, the winning first price bids second order stochastically dominate the second price winning bids. A key result of this paper is that the ratio of the variance of the winning first price bid to that of the winning second price bid is strictly less than one even as the number of bidders goes to infinity. This suggests that the stochastic dominance of the winning first price bids does not vanish even in the limit. Both the asymptotic and small sample properties of winning bids are investigated. In particular, the small sample results suggest that the identification power of econometric procedures that rely on winning bids can decline rapidly as the number of bidders increases. This paper also includes a systematic evaluation of the difference in certainty equivalents between the two auction formats for several common distributions and number of bidders for the case of auctioneers with constant coefficient of absolute risk aversion. These results are presented in a form that makes it easy to apply them to a specific auction of interest.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||24|
|State||Published - Jun 2004|
- Structural econometric analysis of auctions
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Economics and Econometrics