Open Access
May 2006 The Timing of Bid Placement and Extent of Multiple Bidding: An Empirical Investigation Using eBay Online Auctions
Sharad Borle, Peter Boatwright, Joseph B. Kadane
Statist. Sci. 21(2): 194-205 (May 2006). DOI: 10.1214/088342306000000123


Online auctions are fast gaining popularity in today’s electronic commerce. Relative to offline auctions, there is a greater degree of multiple bidding and late bidding in online auctions, an empirical finding by some recent research. These two behaviors (multiple bidding and late bidding) are of “strategic” importance to online auctions and hence important to investigate.

In this article we empirically measure the distribution of bid timings and the extent of multiple bidding in a large set of online auctions, using bidder experience as a mediating variable. We use data from the popular auction site to investigate more than 10,000 auctions from 15 consumer product categories. We estimate the distribution of late bidding and multiple bidding, which allows us to place these product categories along a continuum of these metrics (the extent of late bidding and the extent of multiple bidding). Interestingly, the results of the analysis distinguish most of the product categories from one another with respect to these metrics, implying that product categories, after controlling for bidder experience, differ in the extent of multiple bidding and late bidding observed in them.

We also find a nonmonotonic impact of bidder experience on the timing of bid placements. Experienced bidders are “more” active either toward the close of auction or toward the start of auction. The impact of experience on the extent of multiple bidding, though, is monotonic across the auction interval; more experienced bidders tend to indulge “less” in multiple bidding.


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Sharad Borle. Peter Boatwright. Joseph B. Kadane. "The Timing of Bid Placement and Extent of Multiple Bidding: An Empirical Investigation Using eBay Online Auctions." Statist. Sci. 21 (2) 194 - 205, May 2006.


Published: May 2006
First available in Project Euclid: 7 August 2006

zbMATH: 05191860
MathSciNet: MR2324078
Digital Object Identifier: 10.1214/088342306000000123

Keywords: common values , Conway–Maxwell–Poisson , hierarchical Bayes , late and multiple bidding , Online auctions , private values

Rights: Copyright © 2006 Institute of Mathematical Statistics

Vol.21 • No. 2 • May 2006
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