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Pricing Multi-unit Markets

Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNISA,volume 11316)

Abstract

We study the power and limitations of posted prices in multi-unit markets, where agents arrive sequentially in an arbitrary order. We prove upper and lower bounds on the largest fraction of the optimal social welfare that can be guaranteed with posted prices, under a range of assumptions about the designer’s information and agents’ valuations. Our results provide insights about the relative power of uniform and non-uniform prices, the relative difficulty of different valuation classes, and the implications of different informational assumptions. Among other results, we prove constant-factor guarantees for agents with (symmetric) subadditive valuations, even in an incomplete-information setting and with uniform prices.

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Notes

  1. 1.

    For examples involving identical items, think about general-admission concert tickets, pizzas at Una Pizza Napoletana (which shuts down for the night when the dough runs out), or shares in an IPO (other than Google [33]).

  2. 2.

    No non-trivial guarantees are possible without at least partial knowledge about agents’ valuations.

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Correspondence to Warut Suksompong .

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Ezra, T., Feldman, M., Roughgarden, T., Suksompong, W. (2018). Pricing Multi-unit Markets. In: Christodoulou, G., Harks, T. (eds) Web and Internet Economics. WINE 2018. Lecture Notes in Computer Science(), vol 11316. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-04612-5_10

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-04612-5_10

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