The District of Columbia now auctions its surplus property online through GovDeals, a Liquidity Services, Inc. marketplace. The district awarded the contract for the management of the inventory, appraisal, sale and shipping of the city's surplus property to Liquidity Services Inc. LSI conducts auctions of city assets such as vehicles, police automobile accessories, computer equipment, radios and other communications equipment, office furniture and other supplies through its online marketplace. The auctions are expected to improve data tracking and financial oversight of the city's surplus asset disposition activities.
Participants in any Treasury auction consist of small investors and institutional investors who submit bids categorized as either competitive or non-competitive tenders. Non-competitive tenders are submitted by smaller investors who are guaranteed to receive bills, but they won’t know what discount rate they will receive until the auction closes. In effect, these investors receive no guarantee on the price or discount received. An investor who submits a non-competitive bid agrees to accept whatever discount rate is decided at the auction, determined by the competitive side of the auction which is handled as a Dutch auction. The minimum non-competitive tender for a Treasury bill is $10,000. The non-competitive closing time for bills is normally 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time on auction day.
This is the practice, especially by high-end art auctioneers, of raising false bids at crucial times in the bidding in order to create the appearance of greater demand or to extend bidding momentum for a work on offer. To call out these nonexistent bids auctioneers might fix their gaze at a point in the auction room that is difficult for the audience to pin down. The practice is frowned upon in the industry. In the United States, chandelier bidding is not illegal. In fact, an auctioneer may bid up the price of an item to the reserve price, which is an unstated amount the consignor will not sell the item for. However, the auction house is required to disclose this information.
Consignee and consignor - as pertaining to auctions, the consignor (also called the seller, and in some contexts the vendor) is the person owning the item to be auctioned or the owner's representative, while the consignee is the auction house. The consignor maintains title until such time that an item is purchased by a bidder and the bidder pays the auction house.
The Federal Reserve, also known as the Fed, is the central bank of the United States, and it monetizes U.S. debt when it buys U.S. Treasury bills, bonds, and notes. When the Federal Reserve purchases these Treasurys, it doesn't have to print money to do so. It issues credit to the Federal Reserve member banks that hold the Treasurys and then it puts them on its own balance sheet. It does this through an office at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Everyone treats the credit just like money, even though the Fed doesn't print actual cash.
Whenever bidders at an auction are aware of the identity of the other bidders there is a risk that they will form a "ring" or "pool" and thus manipulate the auction result, a practice known as collusion. By agreeing to bid only against outsiders, never against members of the "ring", competition becomes weaker, which may dramatically affect the final price level. After the end of the official auction an unofficial auction may take place among the "ring" members. The difference in price between the two auctions could then be split among the members. This form of a ring was used as a central plot device in the opening episode of the 1979 British television series The House of Caradus, 'For Love or Money', uncovered by Helena Caradus on her return from Paris.