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House money effects, risk preferences and the public goods game

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  • Jing, Lin
  • Cheo, Roland

Abstract

This paper investigates whether risk preferences inform the decision of how much to put into the public account in the public goods game under the three different frames (the two house money effect frames: the standard and covered-loss frames, as well as the real-loss frame). The main contribution of this paper finds that the covered loss and real loss treatments are statistically equivalent. This assures researchers that just introducing the notion of loss into an experimental treatment without the need for participants to realize a real loss is still a valid experimental instrument. We also find that the house money effect is a better explanation for the difference in contributions between gain and loss framing than loss aversion.

Suggested Citation

  • Jing, Lin & Cheo, Roland, 2013. "House money effects, risk preferences and the public goods game," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 120(2), pages 310-313.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolet:v:120:y:2013:i:2:p:310-313
    DOI: 10.1016/j.econlet.2013.04.037
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Sasaki, Shunichiro & Xie, Shiyu & Ohtake, Fumio & Qin, Jie & Tsutsui, Yoshiro, 2008. "Experiments on risk attitude: The case of Chinese students," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 245-259, June.
    2. Houser, Daniel & Schunk, Daniel & Winter, Joachim, 2010. "Distinguishing trust from risk: An anatomy of the investment game," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 74(1-2), pages 72-81, May.
    3. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-291, March.
    4. Nathalie Etchart-Vincent & Olivier l’Haridon, 2011. "Monetary incentives in the loss domain and behavior toward risk: An experimental comparison of three reward schemes including real losses," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 42(1), pages 61-83, February.
    5. Glenn Harrison, 2007. "House money effects in public good experiments: Comment," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 10(4), pages 429-437, December.
    6. Charles A. Holt & Susan K. Laury, 2002. "Risk Aversion and Incentive Effects," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1644-1655, December.
    7. Eckel, Catherine C. & Wilson, Rick K., 2004. "Is trust a risky decision?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 55(4), pages 447-465, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Lu, Peng, 2015. "Imitating winner or sympathizing loser? Quadratic effects on cooperative behavior in prisoners’ dilemma games," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 436(C), pages 327-337.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Risk profile; Public goods experiment; House money effect; Real losses; Covered losses; Prospect theory;

    JEL classification:

    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods

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