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Probabilistic dominance and status quo bias

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  • Riella, Gil
  • Teper, Roee

Abstract

Decision makers have a strong tendency to retain the current state of affairs. This well-documented phenomenon is termed status quo bias. We present the probabilistic dominance approach to status quo bias: an alternative is considered acceptable to replace the status quo only if the chances of a (subjectively) severe loss, relative to the status quo, are not too high. Probabilistic dominance is applied and behaviorally characterized in a choice model that allows for a range of status quo biases, general enough to accommodate unanimity, but also standard expected utility maximization. We present a comparative notion of “revealing more bias towards the status quo” and study its implications to the probabilistic dominance model of choice. Lastly, the model is applied to the endowment effect phenomenon and to a problem of international portfolio choice when investors are home biased.

Suggested Citation

  • Riella, Gil & Teper, Roee, 2014. "Probabilistic dominance and status quo bias," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 288-304.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:gamebe:v:87:y:2014:i:c:p:288-304
    DOI: 10.1016/j.geb.2014.04.010
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    Cited by:

    1. Bachi, Benjamin & Spiegler, Ran, 2018. "Buridanic competition," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 298-315.
    2. repec:eee:jeborg:v:156:y:2018:i:c:p:55-70 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Faro, José Heleno, 2015. "Variational Bewley preferences," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 157(C), pages 699-729.
    4. Buturak, Gökhan & Evren, Özgür, 2017. "Choice overload and asymmetric regret," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 12(3), September.
    5. repec:the:publsh:2744 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Gökhan Buturaky & Özgür Evren, 2016. "Choice Overload and Asymmetric Regret," Working Papers w0235, New Economic School (NES).
    7. Mandler, Michael, 2014. "Indecisiveness in behavioral welfare economics," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 97(C), pages 219-235.
    8. Maltz, Amnon, 2016. "Experience based dynamic choice: A revealed preference approach," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 128(C), pages 1-13.
    9. Guney, Begum & Richter, Michael, 2015. "An experiment on aspiration-based choice," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 119(C), pages 512-526.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Probabilistic dominance; Status quo bias; Comparative status quo bias; Endowment effect; Home bias;

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty

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