Winning Play in Spectrum Auctions

41 Pages Posted: 5 Mar 2009  

Jeremy Bulow

Stanford University; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Jonathan Levin

Stanford University - Department of Economics; Stanford Graduate School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Paul R. Milgrom

Stanford University

Date Written: March 2009

Abstract

We describe factors that make bidding in large spectrum auctions complex -- including exposure and budget problems, the role of timing within an ascending auction, and the possibilities for price forecasting -- and how economic and game-theoretic analysis can assist bidders in overcoming these problems. We illustrate with the case of the FCC's Advanced Wireless Service auction, in which a new entrant, SpectrumCo, faced all these problems yet managed to purchase nationwide coverage at a discount of roughly a third relative to the prices paid by its incumbent competitors in the same auction, saving more than a billion dollars.

Suggested Citation

Bulow, Jeremy and Levin, Jonathan and Milgrom, Paul R., Winning Play in Spectrum Auctions (March 2009). NBER Working Paper No. w14765. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1352946

Jeremy I. Bulow (Contact Author)

Stanford University ( email )

Room L 237
Stanford, CA 94305-5015
United States
650-723-2160 (Phone)
650-725-0468 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Jonathan D. Levin

Stanford University - Department of Economics ( email )

Landau Economics Building
579 Serra Mall
Stanford, CA 94305-6072
United States

Stanford Graduate School of Business ( email )

655 Knight Way
Stanford, CA 94305-5015
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Paul R. Milgrom

Stanford University ( email )

Landau Economics Building
579 Serra Mall
Stanford, CA 94305-6072
United States
+1-650-723-3397 (Phone)
+1-419-791-8545 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: www.milgrom.net

Paper statistics

Downloads
48
Abstract Views
581