We study auctions in which the number of potential bidders is large, such as in Internet auctions. With numerous bidders, the expected revenue and the optimal bid function in a first price auction result in complicated expressions, except for a few simple distribution function for the bidders' valuations. We show that these expressions can be well approximated using extreme value theory without assuming a particular distribution function. The theory is applied to data from Internet auctions.
Auctions Numerous bidders Extreme values Internet auctions