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Eliminating Laboratory Asset Bubbles by Paying Interest on Cash

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  • Giusti, Giovanni
  • Jiang, Janet Hua
  • Xu, Yiping

Abstract

The seminal work of Smith Suchanek and Williams (1988) finds price bubbles are frequently observed in an experimental asset market where a single asset with a finite lifetime is traded. Ever since, many studies have been carried out to understand the reason why bubbles occur in such an environment and to find mechanisms to eliminate bubbles.In this paper, we introduce an interest-bearing savings account to the experimental asset market. We find bubbles disappear with high interest rates. The effect of the interest rate potentially works in two ways. First, the savings account increases the opportunity cost of buying shares, which in turn, reduces the incentive to speculate and alleviates the “active participation” problem as raised in Lei, Noussair and Plott (2001). Second, fixing the dividend process and terminal value of the asset, the time trend of the fundamental value of the asset becomes positive with a high interest rate. An increasing fundamental value is more compatible with subjects’ perception that asset prices tend to be flat or increasing in the long run. Therefore, subjects are more likely to follow the fundamental value when they trade and over-pricing is lessened. To disentangle the effects through the two channels, we run a second set of experiments with high interest rate but a lower terminal value to induce the fundamental value of the asset to decrease over time. Bubbles reappear in these sessions, which suggests the time path of the fundamental value is more important for reducing bubbles.

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File URL: http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/54970/
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 37321.

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Date of creation: 12 Mar 2012
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:37321

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Keywords: Asset Bubbles; Experimental Economics;

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References

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  1. Reshmaan N. Hussam & David Porter & Vernon L. Smith, 2008. "Thar She Blows: Can Bubbles Be Rekindled with Experienced Subjects?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 924-37, June.
  2. Vivian Lei & Filip Vesely, 2009. "Market Efficiency: Evidence From A No-Bubble Asset Market Experiment," Pacific Economic Review, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(2), pages 246-258, 05.
  3. Charles Noussair & Stephane Robin & Bernard Ruffieux, 2001. "Price Bubbles in Laboratory Asset Markets with Constant Fundamental Values," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 4(1), pages 87-105, June.
  4. Mark van Boening & Vernon L. Smith & Charissa P. Wellford, 2000. "Dividend timing and behavior in laboratory asset markets," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 16(3), pages 567-583.
  5. AJ A. Bostian & Charles A. Holt, 2009. "Price Bubbles with Discounting: A Web-Based Classroom Experiment," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(1), pages 27-37, January.
  6. Noussair, C. & Robin, S. & Ruffieux, B., 1998. "Bubbles and Anti-Crashes in Laboratory Asset Markets with Constant Fundamental Values," Purdue University Economics Working Papers 1119, Purdue University, Department of Economics.
  7. Volodymyr Lugovskyy & Daniela Puzzello & Steven Tucker, 2011. "An Experimental Study of Bubble Formation in Asset Markets Using the Tâtonnement Trading Institution," Working Papers in Economics 11/07, University of Canterbury, Department of Economics and Finance.
  8. John Duffy & M. Ünver, 2006. "Asset price bubbles and crashes with near-zero-intelligence traders," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 27(3), pages 537-563, 04.
  9. Noussair, C.N. & Lei , V. & Plott, C., 2001. "Non-speculative bubbles in experimental asset markets: Lack of common knowledge of rationality vs. actual irrationality," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-381105, Tilburg University.
  10. Oechssler, Jörg, 2010. "Searching beyond the lamppost: Let's focus on economically relevant questions," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 65-67, January.
  11. Porter, David P & Smith, Vernon L, 1995. "Futures Contracting and Dividend Uncertainty in Experimental Asset Markets," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 68(4), pages 509-41, October.
  12. Smith, Vernon L & Suchanek, Gerry L & Williams, Arlington W, 1988. "Bubbles, Crashes, and Endogenous Expectations in Experimental Spot Asset Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(5), pages 1119-51, September.
  13. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
  14. Van Boening, Mark V. & Williams, Arlington W. & LaMaster, Shawn, 1993. "Price bubbles and crashes in experimental call markets," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 179-185.
  15. Charles N. Noussair & Owen Powell, 2010. "Peaks and valleys: Price discovery in experimental asset markets with non-monotonic fundamentals," Journal of Economic Studies, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 37(2), pages 152-180, May.
  16. Thomas Stöckl & Jürgen Huber & Michael Kirchler, 2010. "Bubble measures in experimental asset markets," Experimental Economics, Springer, vol. 13(3), pages 284-298, September.
  17. Smith, Vernon L., 2010. "Theory and experiment: What are the questions?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 3-15, January.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Adriana Breaban & Charles N. Noussair, 2013. "Emotional State and Market Behavior," Working Papers 2013/08, Economics Department, Universitat Jaume I, Castellón (Spain).
  2. Charles Noussair & Steven Tucker, 2014. "Cash Inflows and Bubbles in Asset Markets with Constant Fundamental Values," Working Papers in Economics 14/03, University of Waikato, Department of Economics.
  3. Adriana Breaban & Charles N. Noussair, 2014. "Fundamental value trajectories and trader characteristics in an asset market experiment," Working Papers 2014/08, Economics Department, Universitat Jaume I, Castellón (Spain).
  4. Fischbacher, Urs & Hens, Thorsten & Zeisberger, Stefan, 2013. "The impact of monetary policy on stock market bubbles and trading behavior: Evidence from the lab," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(10), pages 2104-2122.

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