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Robust Inference in First-Price Auctions: Experimental Findings as Identifying Restrictions

  • Date 2020-02-20 (Thu)
  • Time 02:30 PM
  • Venue Conference Room B110
  • Presider Professor Chu-An Liu
  • Speaker Professor Serafin Grundl
  • Background Professor Grundl received his Ph.D. in Economics from University of Wisconsin in 2014. He is currently a Senior Economist at Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. His research fields are Industrial Organization, Microeconomics, and Econometrics and Statistics.
  • Abstract This paper shows how experimental findings can be used for structural estimation. In laboratory experiments bidding in first-price auctions is more aggressive than predicted by the risk-neutral Bayesian Nash Equilibrium (RNBNE) - a finding known as the overbidding puzzle. Instead of estimating a particular model of overbidding, we use the overbidding restriction itself for identification, which allows us to bound the valuation distribution and the seller's payoff function. These bounds are consistent with RNBNE and all models of overbidding and remain valid if there is unobserved heterogeneity in the bidding strategies. We evaluate the validity of the bounds numerically and in experimental data.