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Regulatory Uncertainty: The Impact of the 2015 Open Internet Order on Broadband Infrastructure Investment

By Dane Bourcy Burkholder and Chin Jie Lim

This paper analyzes the impact of the United States Federal Communication’s (FCC) March 2015 Open Internet Order (OIO) on broadband infrastructure investment outcomes such as changes in speed of services, market entry. We find that higher broadband investment levels deter potential entrants and may weed out competition amongst incumbent ISPs from December 2014 to December 2016. The 2015 OIO appears to have negatively impacted the probability of an ISP entering a census block for the first time by 7.17% during any six-month time periods from June 2015 to December 2016 compared to the time period from June 2010 to December 2014.

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Advisor: Dr. Michelle Connolly | JEL Codes: D21, D25, D42, L20, L50, L96

Structural Estimation of FCC Bidder Valuation

By Renhao Tan, Zachary Lim, and Jackie Xiao

We modify a method introduced in Fox and Bajari (2013) which structurally estimates the deterministic component of bidder valuations in FCC spectrum auctions based on a pairwise stability condition: two bidders cannot exchange two licenses in a way that increases the sum of their valuations, and we apply it to C block auctions 5, 22, 35 and 58. Our modifications improve the fit of the Fox and Bajari (2013)’s estimator especially in similar auctions involving big bidders. We find that there is evidence of significant “cross-auction” complementaries between licenses sold in a particular auction and those already owned by these endowed bidders.

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Advisor: Michelle Connolly | JEL Codes: D44, D45, H82, L82

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