The Swiss Umts Spectrum Auction Flop: Bad Luck or Bad Design?

17 Pages Posted: 21 Aug 2001

See all articles by Elmar Wolfstetter

Elmar Wolfstetter

Humboldt University of Berlin - Faculty of Economics; Korea University - College of Economics and Commerce; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Date Written: August 2001

Abstract

This paper gives an account of events, and explains some systematic reasons of the UMTS auction flop in Switzerland. Apart from general market developments, which could not have been anticipated, we argue that auction design which was introduced in England and adopted in Switzerland and elsewhere is a cause of the disappointing performance of many UMTS auctions in Europe, of which Switzerland is just one particularly pronounced example.The regulator would have been better advised to import some key ingredients of the auction design employed in Germany and Austria. This would have assured higher revenue or more competition. The paper closes with several proposals on how one should conduct future spectrum auctions.

Keywords: Spectrum Auctions, Telecommunications, Industrial Organization

JEL Classification: D43, D44, D45, H20, L13

Suggested Citation

Wolfstetter, Elmar G., The Swiss Umts Spectrum Auction Flop: Bad Luck or Bad Design? (August 2001). CESifo Working Paper No. 534, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=279683

Elmar G. Wolfstetter (Contact Author)

Humboldt University of Berlin - Faculty of Economics ( email )

Institut für Wirtschaftstheorie I
Spandauer Strasse 1
Berlin
Germany
+49 30 2093 5652/3 (Phone)
+49 30 2093 5619 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www2.hu-berlin.de/wt1wo/staff/wolfstetter/index.html

Korea University - College of Economics and Commerce ( email )

Anam-dong, Sungbuk-Ku
Seoul, 136-701
Korea

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.CESifo.de

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