Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login

Can Expected Utility Theory Explain Gambling?

Contents:

Author Info

  • Roger Hartley
  • Lisa Farrell

Abstract

We investigate the ability of expected utility theory to account for simultaneous gambling and insurance. Contrary to a previous claim that borrowing and lending in perfect capital markets rules out a demand for gambles, we show that expected utility theory with non-concave utility functions can still explain gambling. When the rates of interest and time preference are equal, agents will seek to gamble unless income falls in a finite set of exceptional values. When these rates differ, there will be a range of incomes for which gambles are desired. In both cases repeated gambling is not explained but market imperfections such as different borrowing and lending rates can account for persistent gambling provided the rates span the rate of time preference.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://www.keele.ac.uk/depts/ec/wpapers/9802.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, Keele University in its series Keele Department of Economics Discussion Papers (1995-2001) with number 98/02.

as in new window
Length:
Date of creation: 1998
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in American Economic Review, June 2002, Vol. 92(3), pages 613-624.
Handle: RePEc:kee:keeldp:98/02

Contact details of provider:
Postal: Department of Economics, University of Keele, Keele, Staffordshire, ST5 5BG - United Kingdom
Phone: +44 (0)1782 584581
Fax: +44 (0)1782 717577
Email:
Web page: http://www.keele.ac.uk/depts/ec/cer/
More information through EDIRC

Order Information:
Postal: Department of Economics, Keele University, Keele, Staffordshire ST5 5BG - United Kingdom
Email:
Web: http://www.keele.ac.uk/depts/ec/cer/pubs_kerps.htm

Related research

Keywords:

Other versions of this item:

Find related papers by JEL classification:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Farrell, Lisa & Morgenroth, Edgar & Walker, Ian, 1999. " A Time Series Analysis of U.K. Lottery Sales: Long and Short Run Price Elasticities," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 61(4), pages 513-26, November.
  2. Conlisk, John, 1993. " The Utility of Gambling," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 6(3), pages 255-75, June.
  3. Kim, Young Chin, 1973. "Choice in the Lottery-Insurance Situation Augmented-Income Approach," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 87(1), pages 148-56, February.
  4. Milton Friedman & L. J. Savage, 1948. "The Utility Analysis of Choices Involving Risk," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 56, pages 279.
  5. Bruno Jullien & Bernard Salanie, 2000. "Estimating Preferences under Risk: The Case of Racetrack Bettors," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(3), pages 503-530, June.
  6. Ng Yew Kwang, 1965. "Why do People Buy Lottery Tickets? Choices Involving Risk and the Indivisibility of Expenditure," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 73, pages 530.
  7. Quiggin, John, 1991. "On the Optimal Design of Lotteries," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 58(229), pages 1-16, February.
  8. Becker, Gary S & Murphy, Kevin M, 1988. "A Theory of Rational Addiction," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(4), pages 675-700, August.
  9. Dowell, Richard S & McLaren, Keith R, 1986. "An Intertemporal Analysis of the Interdependence between Risk Preference, Retirement, and Work Rate Decisions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(3), pages 667-82, June.
  10. Machina, Mark J, 1989. "Dynamic Consistency and Non-expected Utility Models of Choice under Uncertainty," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 27(4), pages 1622-68, December.
  11. Dobbs, Ian M, 1988. "Risk Aversion, Gambling and the Labour-Leisure Choice," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 35(2), pages 171-75, May.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Nyman, John A. & Welte, John W. & Dowd, Bryan E., 2008. "Something for nothing: A model of gambling behavior," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 37(6), pages 2492-2504, December.
  2. Il-Horn Hann & Kai-Lung Hui & Tom S. Lee & I.P.L. Png, 2003. "The Value of Online Information Privacy: An Empirical Investigation," Industrial Organization 0304001, EconWPA, revised 01 Apr 2003.
  3. Atalay, Kadir & Bakhtiar, Fayzan & Cheung, Stephen L. & Slonim, Robert, 2013. "Savings and Prize-Linked Savings Accounts," Working Papers 2013-12, University of Sydney, School of Economics.
  4. Barnett, Richard C. & Bhattacharya, Joydeep & Bunzel, Helle, 2008. "Choosing to Keep Up with the Joneses and Income Inequality," Staff General Research Papers 12862, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  5. Douglas L. Miller & Anna Paulson, 2007. "Risk taking and the quality of informal insurance: gambling and remittances in Thailand," Working Paper Series WP-07-01, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  6. Fong, Wai Mun & Lean, Hooi Hooi & Wong, Wing Keung, 2008. "Stochastic dominance and behavior towards risk: The market for Internet stocks," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 194-208, October.
  7. Raj Chetty, 2004. "Consumption Commitments, Unemployment Durations, and Local Risk Aversion," NBER Working Papers 10211, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. N. Bhattacharya & T. A. Garrett, 2008. "Why people choose negative expected return assets - an empirical examination of a utility theoretic explanation," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(1), pages 27-34.
  9. Thomas Crossley & Hamish Low & Sarah Smith, 2011. "Do consumers gamble to convexify?," IFS Working Papers W11/07, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  10. Raj Chetty & Adam Szeidl, 2007. "Consumption Commitments and Risk Preferences," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 122(2), pages 831-877, 05.
  11. Barnett, Richard C. & Bhattacharya, Joydeep & Bunzel, Helle, 2008. "Are the Joneses Making You Financially Vulnerable?," Staff General Research Papers 12909, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  12. Kent Grote & Victor Matheson, 2011. "The Economics of Lotteries: An Annotated Bibliography," Working Papers 1110, College of the Holy Cross, Department of Economics.
  13. Chen, Shu-Heng & Chie, Bin-Tzong, 2008. "Lottery markets design, micro-structure, and macro-behavior: An ACE approach," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 463-480, August.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kee:keeldp:98/02. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Martin E. Diedrich) The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask Martin E. Diedrich to update the entry or send us the correct address.

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.