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The gambler's fallacy and gender

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  • Suetens, Sigrid
  • Tyran, Jean-Robert

Abstract

The “gambler's fallacy” is the false belief that a random event is less likely to occur if the event has occurred recently. Such beliefs are false if the onset of events is in fact independent of previous events. We study gender differences in the gambler's fallacy using data from the Danish state lottery. Our data set is unique in that we track individual players over time which allows us to investigate how men and women react with their number picking to outcomes of recent lotto drawings. We find evidence of gambler's fallacy for men but not for women. On average, men are about 1% less likely to bet on numbers drawn in the previous week than on numbers not drawn. Women do not react significantly to the previous week's drawing outcome.

Suggested Citation

  • Suetens, Sigrid & Tyran, Jean-Robert, 2012. "The gambler's fallacy and gender," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 83(1), pages 118-124.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:83:y:2012:i:1:p:118-124
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2011.06.017
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    3. Sigrid Suetens & Claus B. Galbo-Jørgensen & Jean-Robert Tyran, 2016. "Predicting Lotto Numbers: A Natural Experiment On The Gambler'S Fallacy And The Hot-Hand Fallacy," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 584-607, June.
    4. Rachel Croson & James Sundali, 2005. "The Gambler’s Fallacy and the Hot Hand: Empirical Data from Casinos," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 30(3), pages 195-209, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Duttle, Kai, 2015. "Disentangling two causes of biased probability judgment: Cognitive skills and perception of randomness," Ruhr Economic Papers 568, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    2. Sigrid Suetens & Claus B. Galbo-Jørgensen & Jean-Robert Tyran, 2016. "Predicting Lotto Numbers: A Natural Experiment On The Gambler'S Fallacy And The Hot-Hand Fallacy," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 584-607, June.
    3. Karsten Hueffer & Miguel A. Fonseca & Anthony Leiserowitz & Karen M. Taylor, 2013. "The wisdom of crowds: Predicting a weather and climate-related event," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 8(2), pages 91-105, March.
    4. Stöckl, Thomas & Huber, Jürgen & Kirchler, Michael & Lindner, Florian, 2015. "Hot hand and gambler's fallacy in teams: Evidence from investment experiments," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 117(C), pages 327-339.
    5. Tong V. Wang & Rogier J. D. Potter van Loon & Martijn J. van den Assem & Dennie van Dolder, 2016. "Number preferences in lotteries," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 11(3), pages 243-259, May.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Lottery gambling; Gender; Gambler's fallacy;

    JEL classification:

    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • D84 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Expectations; Speculations
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination

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