nep-exp New Economics Papers
on Experimental Economics
Issue of 2010‒02‒05
four papers chosen by
Daniel Houser
George Mason University

  1. Will You Accept Without Knowing What? A Thuringian Newspaper Experiment of the Yes-No Game By Werner Güth; Oliver Kirchkamp
  2. Behavioral Economic Concepts To Encourage Healthy Eating in School Cafeterias: Experiments and Lessons From College Students By Just, David R.; Wansink, Brian; Mancino, Lisa; Guthrie, Joanne
  3. Sense of Control Affects Investment Behavior By Li King King
  4. Impacts of Personality on Herding in Financial Decision-Making By Baddeley, M.; Burke, C.; Schultz, W.; Tobler, T.

  1. By: Werner Güth (Strategiec Interaction Group, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Jena); Oliver Kirchkamp (Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, School of Economics and Business Administration)
    Abstract: Many economic experiments are run in the laboratory with students as participants. In this paper we use a newspaper experiment to learn more about external validity of lab research. Our workhorse is the Yes-No game. Unlike in ultimatum games responders of the Yes-No games do not know the proposal when deciding between whether to accept it or not. We use two different amounts that can be shared (100 Euro and 1000 Euro). In line with findings for the ultimatum game, offers were fairer and rejections less likely when participants are older and submit their decisisons via mail rather than the Internet. By comparing our results with other studies (using executives or students), we demonstrate, at least for this type of game, the external validity of lab research.
    JEL: C91 C93
    Date: 2010–01–25
  2. By: Just, David R.; Wansink, Brian; Mancino, Lisa; Guthrie, Joanne
    Abstract: Changing small factors that influence consumer choice may lead to healthier eating within controlled settings, such as school cafeterias. This report describes a behavioral experiment in a college cafeteria to assess the effects of various payment options and menu selection methods on food choices. The results indicate that payment options, such as cash or debit cards, can significantly affect food choices. College students using a card that prepaid only for healthful foods made more nutritious choices than students using either cash or general debit cards. How and when individuals select their food can also influence food choices. College students who preselected their meals from a menu board made significantly different food choices than students who ordered their meals while viewing the foods in line.
    Keywords: Behavioral economics, healthy eating, diet quality, food choices, school meal programs, experimental economics, ERS, USDA., Agricultural and Food Policy, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, Health Economics and Policy, Institutional and Behavioral Economics, Teaching/Communication/Extension/Profession,
    Date: 2008–12
  3. By: Li King King (Strategic Interaction Group, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Jena)
    Abstract: Preference for control affects investment behavior. Participants of laboratory experiments invest different amount of money in a risky asset when face with two different methods of control which have identical payoff structure and probability distribution, but provide different sense of control. Preference for controlling and not controlling are both observed. Participants increase their investment when their preferred method of control is used. Participants who prefer to control more reduce their investment more strongly when face with less control. Preference for control has larger effect on investment behavior when participants are induced to have a comparative mindset rather than non-comparative mindset.
    Keywords: Preference for control, sense of control, risk attitudes, illusion of control, source preference, portfolio choice, behavioral finance, comparative mindset, non-comparative mindset
    JEL: B49 C91 D81 G11 G19
    Date: 2010–01–20
  4. By: Baddeley, M.; Burke, C.; Schultz, W.; Tobler, T.
    Abstract: Experimental analyses have identified significant tendencies for individuals to follow herd decisions, a finding which has been explained using Bayesian principles of statistical inference. This paper outlines the results from a herding task designed to extend these analyses. Empirically, we estimate logistic functions using panel fixed effect estimation techniques to quantify the impact of herd decisions on individuals‘ decisions about whether or not to buy a financial asset. We confirm that there are statistically significant propensities to herd and that social information about others‘ decisions has an impact on individuals‘ decisions. We extend these findings by identifying associations between herding propensities and individual characteristics such as gender, age and specific personality traits including impulsivity and venturesomeness.
    Keywords: herding, social influence, financial decision making, personality
    JEL: D81 C92 G14
    Date: 2010–01–22

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