London School of Economics

Project Description

eBay and Consumer Behavior

Project Abstract

A large percentage of bids are revised ones placed in the last minutes before an auction closes. This disseration explores a closely-related and more fundamental question: why do people revise their bids?

Is it a way of delaying the chore of valuing an item? Are these revised bids a result of a strategy against inexperienced bidders who either are confused by different auction structures or follow experienced bidders� bidding to ascertain an item�s worth, or against dishonest sellers who use shill bidders? OR are various irrational behavior, namely the influence of forward-looking bidding, competition, opportunism, and risk adversity the main causes? In addition, is there a gender-relation between gender and bidding behavior?

Specifically, do females rely more on probing bidding (entering the auction early, and revising their bids earlier) while males use sentry bidding (entering the auction in the last minutes) more often? Which strategy dominated by a gender results in a higher success rate and bid price?

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