IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/bla/ecinqu/v48y2010i1p133-146.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Portfolio Choice And Risk Attitudes: An Experiment

Author

Listed:
  • GARY CHARNESS
  • URI GNEEZY

Abstract

"Using financial incentives, we study how portfolio choice (how much to invest in a risky asset) depends on three well-known behavioral phenomena: ambiguity aversion, the illusion of control, and myopic loss aversion. We find evidence that these phenomena are present and test how the level of investment is affected by these motivations; at the same time, we investigate whether participants are willing to explicitly pay a small sum of money to indulge preferences for less ambiguity, more control, or more frequent feedback/opportunities to choose the investment level. First, the observed preference for "control" did not affect investment behavior and in fact disappeared when participants were asked to actually pay to gain more control. Second, while people were indeed willing to pay for less ambiguity, the level of ambiguity did not influence investment levels. Finally, participants were willing to pay to have more frequent feedback opportunities to change their portfolio, even though prior research has shown that people invest less in risky assets (and earn less) in this case". ("JEL" B49, C91, D81, G11, G19) Copyright (c) 2009 Western Economic Association International.

Suggested Citation

  • Gary Charness & Uri Gneezy, 2010. "Portfolio Choice And Risk Attitudes: An Experiment," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 48(1), pages 133-146, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ecinqu:v:48:y:2010:i:1:p:133-146
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1465-7295.2009.00219.x
    File Function: link to full text
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Dennis Dittrich & Werner Guth & Boris Maciejovsky, 2005. "Overconfidence in investment decisions: An experimental approach," The European Journal of Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(6), pages 471-491.
    2. Mehra, Rajnish & Prescott, Edward C., 1985. "The equity premium: A puzzle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 145-161, March.
    3. Sutter, Matthias, 2007. "Are teams prone to myopic loss aversion? An experimental study on individual versus team investment behavior," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 97(2), pages 128-132, November.
    4. Plott, Charles R & Sunder, Shyam, 1982. "Efficiency of Experimental Security Markets with Insider Information: An Application of Rational-Expectations Models," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(4), pages 663-698, August.
    5. Bruno Biais & Denis Hilton & Karine Mazurier & Sébastien Pouget, 2005. "Judgemental Overconfidence, Self-Monitoring, and Trading Performance in an Experimental Financial Market," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(2), pages 287-312.
    6. Gervais, Simon & Odean, Terrance, 2001. "Learning to be Overconfident," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 14(1), pages 1-27.
    7. Fama, Eugene F., 1998. "Market efficiency, long-term returns, and behavioral finance," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(3), pages 283-306, September.
    8. Uri Gneezy & Jan Potters, 1997. "An Experiment on Risk Taking and Evaluation Periods," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(2), pages 631-645.
    9. Plott, Charles R & Sunder, Shyam, 1988. "Rational Expectations and the Aggregation of Diverse Information in Laboratory Security Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(5), pages 1085-1118, September.
    10. Bloomfield, Robert & Libby, Robert & Nelson, Mark W., 1999. "Confidence and the welfare of less-informed investors," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 24(8), pages 623-647, November.
    11. Gneezy, U. & Kapteyn, A. & Potters, J.J.M., 2003. "Evaluation periods and asset prices in a market experience," Other publications TiSEM 55910884-79d7-483c-abbb-1, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    12. Lei, Vivian & Noussair, Charles N & Plott, Charles R, 2001. "Nonspeculative Bubbles in Experimental Asset Markets: Lack of Common Knowledge of Rationality vs. Actual Irrationality," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(4), pages 831-859, July.
    13. repec:hrv:faseco:30747159 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Richard H. Thaler & Amos Tversky & Daniel Kahneman & Alan Schwartz, 1997. "The Effect of Myopia and Loss Aversion on Risk Taking: An Experimental Test," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(2), pages 647-661.
    15. Shlomo Benartzi & Richard H. Thaler, 1995. "Myopic Loss Aversion and the Equity Premium Puzzle," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(1), pages 73-92.
    16. Chip Heath & Steven Huddart & Mark Lang, 1999. "Psychological Factors and Stock Option Exercise," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(2), pages 601-627.
    17. Hirshleifer, David & Luo, Guo Ying, 2001. "On the survival of overconfident traders in a competitive securities market," Journal of Financial Markets, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 73-84, January.
    18. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-291, March.
    19. De Bondt, Werner F M & Thaler, Richard, 1985. " Does the Stock Market Overreact?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 40(3), pages 793-805, July.
    20. Michael S. Haigh & John A. List, 2005. "Do Professional Traders Exhibit Myopic Loss Aversion? An Experimental Analysis," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(1), pages 523-534, February.
    21. Uri Gneezy & Arie Kapteyn & Jan Potters, 2003. "Evaluation Periods and Asset Prices in a Market Experiment," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 58(2), pages 821-838, April.
    22. Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1992. "Advances in Prospect Theory: Cumulative Representation of Uncertainty," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 5(4), pages 297-323, October.
    23. Charness, Gary B & Gneezy, Uri, 2007. "Strong Evidence for Gender Differences in Investment," University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series qt428481s8, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
    24. Rakesh K. Sarin & Martin Weber, 1993. "Effects of Ambiguity in Market Experiments," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 39(5), pages 602-615, May.
    25. Kyle, Albert S & Wang, F Albert, 1997. " Speculation Duopoly with Agreement to Disagree: Can Overconfidence Survive the Market Test?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 52(5), pages 2073-2090, December.
    26. Craig R. Fox & Amos Tversky, 1995. "Ambiguity Aversion and Comparative Ignorance," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(3), pages 585-603.
    27. Copeland, Thomas E & Friedman, Daniel, 1991. " Partial Revelation of Information in Experimental Asset Markets," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 46(1), pages 265-295, March.
    28. Richard H. Thaler, 2008. "Mental Accounting and Consumer Choice," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 27(1), pages 15-25, 01-02.
    29. Copeland, Thomas E & Friedman, Daniel, 1992. "The Market Value of Information: Some Experimental Results," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65(2), pages 241-266, April.
    30. Copeland, Thomas E & Friedman, Daniel, 1987. " The Effect of Sequential Information Arrival on Asset Prices: An Experimental Study," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 42(3), pages 763-797, July.
    31. Michaely, Roni & Thaler, Richard H & Womack, Kent L, 1995. " Price Reactions to Dividend Initiations and Omissions: Overreaction or Drift?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(2), pages 573-608, June.
    32. David Hirshleifer, 2001. "Investor Psychology and Asset Pricing," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(4), pages 1533-1597, August.
    33. Kent Daniel & David Hirshleifer & Avanidhar Subrahmanyam, 1998. "Investor Psychology and Security Market Under- and Overreactions," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 53(6), pages 1839-1885, December.
    34. Heath, Chip & Tversky, Amos, 1991. "Preference and Belief: Ambiguity and Competence in Choice under Uncertainty," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 4(1), pages 5-28, January.
    35. Terrance Odean, 1999. "Do Investors Trade Too Much?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(5), pages 1279-1298, December.
    36. Benos, Alexandros V., 1998. "Aggressiveness and survival of overconfident traders," Journal of Financial Markets, Elsevier, vol. 1(3-4), pages 353-383, September.
    37. Barberis, Nicholas & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert, 1998. "A model of investor sentiment," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(3), pages 307-343, September.
    38. Friedman, Daniel, 1993. "Privileged Traders and Asset Market Efficiency: A Laboratory Study," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 28(04), pages 515-534, December.
    39. Daniel Ellsberg, 1961. "Risk, Ambiguity, and the Savage Axioms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 75(4), pages 643-669.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • B49 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology - - - Other
    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G19 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Other

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:ecinqu:v:48:y:2010:i:1:p:133-146. 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: (Christopher F. Baum) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/weaaaea.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.