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The Role of Materialism in the Endowment Effect

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  • I. LENS
  • M. PANDELAERE

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  • L. WARLOP
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    Abstract

    Past research documents an asymmetry between consumers’ willingness to pay for an object and their willingness to accept to give up this object. The current paper presents three studies which demonstrate that materialism moderates this “endowment effect”. Although materialism is not related to willingness-to-pay, materialism is positively related to minimum selling prices for endowed objects. Increasing the attachment to material values with a mortality salience procedure augments the endowment effect even more, particularly for materialists. Our findings validate minimum selling prices for endowed objects as an indirect measure of materialism and qualify the prevalence of the endowment effect.

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    File URL: http://www.feb.ugent.be/nl/Ondz/wp/Papers/wp_09_578.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration in its series Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium with number 09/578.

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    Length: 27 pages
    Date of creation: Apr 2009
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:rug:rugwps:09/578

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    1. Burroughs, James E & Rindfleisch, Aric, 2002. " Materialism and Well-Being: A Conflicting Values Perspective," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 29(3), pages 348-70, December.
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    3. Gwendolyn Morrison, 1997. "Willingness to pay and willingness to accept: some evidence of an endowment effect," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 29(4), pages 411-417.
    4. Kahneman, Daniel & Knetsch, Jack L & Thaler, Richard H, 1990. "Experimental Tests of the Endowment Effect and the Coase Theorem," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(6), pages 1325-48, December.
    5. Sen, Sankar & Johnson, Eric J, 1997. " Mere-Possession Effects without Possession in Consumer Choice," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(1), pages 105-17, June.
    6. Munro, Alistair & Sugden, Robert, 2003. "On the theory of reference-dependent preferences," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 50(4), pages 407-428, April.
    7. Richins, Marsha L & Dawson, Scott, 1992. " A Consumer Values Orientation for Materialism and Its Measurement: Scale Development and Validation," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(3), pages 303-16, December.
    8. Mandel, David R., 2002. "Beyond mere ownership: transaction demand as a moderator of the endowment effect," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 88(2), pages 737-747, July.
    9. Belk, Russell W, 1985. " Materialism: Trait Aspects of Living in the Material World," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 12(3), pages 265-80, December.
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    11. O'Guinn, Thomas C & Shrum, L J, 1997. " The Role of Television in the Construction of Consumer Reality," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 23(4), pages 278-94, March.
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    15. Strahilevitz, Michal A & Loewenstein, George, 1998. " The Effect of Ownership History on the Valuation of Objects," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25(3), pages 276-89, December.
    16. Van Boven, Leaf & Loewenstein, George & Dunning, David, 2003. "Mispredicting the endowment effect:: Underestimation of owners' selling prices by buyer's agents," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 51(3), pages 351-365, July.
    17. Bateman, Ian J, et al, 1997. "A Test of the Theory of Reference-Dependent Preferences," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(2), pages 479-505, May.
    18. Naomi Mandel & Dirk Smeesters, 2008. "The Sweet Escape: Effects of Mortality Salience on Consumption Quantities for High- and Low-Self-Esteem Consumers," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 35(2), pages 309-323, 05.
    19. Bischoff, Ivo & Meckl, Jürgen, 2008. "Endowment effect theory, public goods and welfare," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 37(5), pages 1768-1774, October.
    20. Lin, Chien-Huang & Chuang, Shih-Chieh & Kao, Danny T. & Kung, Chaang-Yung, 2006. "The role of emotions in the endowment effect," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 589-597, August.
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