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The Sources of Happiness: Evidence from the Investment Game

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  • Leonardo Becchetti

    ()
    (University of Rome Tor Vergata)

  • Giacomo degli Antoni

    ()
    (University of Milan - Bicocca)

Abstract

The present paper draws on data collected in an investment game plus a questionnaire to investigate whether happiness is affected by circumstances and/or outcomes of the game and to evaluate which motivations or preference structures (self-interested preferences, inequity aversion, altruism, warm glow, social-welfare preferences, trust or reciprocity) may explain such effect. Our result shows that the amount sent has significant and positive effect on trustors’ self-declared happiness. We interpret this finding by arguing that the happiness effect can be explained by the enactment of the “generating” (social welfare enhancing) power of the trustor’s decision. Characteristics of the investment game are such that the trustor has a value creating while the trustee only a redistributive power. This difference may explain why only trustors and not trustees are significantly and positively affected by their giving decision.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Econometica in its series Econometica Working Papers with number wp13.

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Length: 23
Date of creation: Sep 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ent:wpaper:wp13

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Keywords: Happiness; Investment Game; Social-welfare Preferences;

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References

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Cited by:
  1. Antoci, Angelo & Sabatini, Fabio & Sodini, Mauro, 2011. "Bowling alone but tweeting together: the evolution of human interaction in the social networking era," MPRA Paper 34232, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Sabatini Fabio, 2011. "Can a click buy a little happiness? The impact of business-to-consumer e-commerce on subjective well-being," wp.comunite 0076, Department of Communication, University of Teramo.
  3. Becchetti, Leonardo & Conzo, Pierluigi, 2011. "Enhancing capabilities through credit access: Creditworthiness as a signal of trustworthiness under asymmetric information," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(3), pages 265-278.
  4. Giacomo Degli Antoni & Gianluca Grimalda, 2013. "Optimistic expectations or other-regarding preferences? Analysing the determinants of trust among association members," Working Papers 2013/21, Economics Department, Universitat Jaume I, Castellón (Spain).
  5. Schoenberg, Eric J. & Haruvy, Ernan, 2012. "Relative performance information in asset markets: An experimental approach," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 33(6), pages 1143-1155.
  6. Koch, Christian, 2013. "The Virtue Ethics Hypothesis: Is there a nexus between virtues and well-being?," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 80054, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.

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