on 01-17-2013 08:15 PM
Read about how eBay's Automatic bidding works:
on 01-17-2013 08:40 PM
EBay is not a bid and counter bid kind of auction even though they seem to make it LOOK LIKE one. In reality, eBay auctions are more like a timed sealed bid kind of auction that uses proxy bidding (aka automatic bidding).
Proxy bidding allows you to enter a bid for the MOST that YOU are willing to pay and eBay will only use enough of your bid to keep you in the lead until you win or are outbid. The leading amount is calculated to be no more than one bid increment above the second highest bid and any amount over that is held hidden until it is needed to counter new bids.
Proxy bidding makes it always the HIGHEST bid not necessarily the last bid that wins. With proxy bidding, you can enter the winning bid in the first second, the last second or at any time in between.
What you are experiencing is another bidder who has entered his maximum bid and are immediately being outbid by his "proxy" bid. All bids are considered max bids to be used for automatic bidding. It is just that if you only bid the minimum amount, eBay has nothing left to use for automatic bidding.
EBay tells you the MINIMUM amount that you must bid. You can enter a bid for any amount as long as you are willing to pay that if needed and eBay will use automatic bidding to help you win without all of that bid and counter bidding in small increments.
When a bid is entered, the full amount is compared to the leader's full bid amount. Whichever bid is higher outbids the lessor bid and the new showing amount is set at no more than one bid increment above the second highest bid.