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Title page for ETD etd-07062012-143040

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Gentry, Matthew Loren
Author's Email Address matt.l.gentry@gmail.com
URN etd-07062012-143040
Title Essays on the Analysis of Selection and Search
Degree PhD
Department Economics
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Tong Li Committee Chair
Ali Hortacsu Committee Member
Eric Bond Committee Member
Yanqin Fan Committee Member
  • consumer behavior
  • auctions with entry
  • consumer information
  • revenue equivalence
  • nonparametric identification
Date of Defense 2012-05-08
Availability unrestricted
This dissertation considers questions of information in industrial organization, focusing particularly on the structural analysis of auction and market data. Chapters 1 and 2 explore selection in auctions with entry, deriving conclusions applicable to a wide range of auction processes under minimal assumptions on bidders' pre-entry information. Chapter 1 develops the theory of this model, noting particularly the implications of selection for welfare and policy analysis. Chapter 2 extends this analysis to identification, constructing nonparametric bounds on both model fundamentals and policy outcomes under endogenous and arbitrarily selective entry. Taken together, these findings demonstrate both the practical importance of selection in auctions and the possibility for nonparametric methods to account for such selection in a way that yields practical relevant policy conclusions. Finally, Chapter 3 explores the role of information in a different context: consumer choice in retail markets. In particular, drawing on empirical patterns in retail data, I develop and estimate a structural model of demand in which in-store displays convey price information and price variation motivates search. I find that information frictions have substantial effects on purchase outcomes, with displays increasing both quantity sold and quantity response to price reductions.
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