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Prospect theory and utility theory: Temporary versus permanent attitude toward risk

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  • Levy, Haim
  • Wiener, Zvi

Abstract

Prospect theory (PT), which relies on subjects’ behavior as observed in laboratory experiments, contradicts the behavior predicted by the Expected Utility (EU) paradigm. Having wealth of $100,000 or having wealth of $90,000 and winning $10,000 in a lottery is the same by EU paradigm but not the same by Markowitz (1952) and by PT (1979) which emphasizes the importance of change of wealth rather than total wealth on welfare. In this study, we resolve this contradiction by introducing the concept of temporary attitude toward risk (TATR) and permanent attitude toward risk (PATR). Using these concepts, we build a model that merges both the PT and the EU paradigms. The TATR and PATR concepts explain recent experimental findings and the observed stock price overreaction. We show that a positive risk premium with decreasing absolute risk aversion (DARA) can be consistent with the S-shaped value function used in PT.

Suggested Citation

  • Levy, Haim & Wiener, Zvi, 2013. "Prospect theory and utility theory: Temporary versus permanent attitude toward risk," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 68(C), pages 1-23.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jebusi:v:68:y:2013:i:c:p:1-23 DOI: 10.1016/j.jeconbus.2013.01.002
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Ewa Michalska & Renata Dudzinska-Baryla, 2012. "Comparison of the valuations of alternatives based on cumulative prospect theory and almost stochastic dominance," Operations Research and Decisions, Wroclaw University of Technology, Institute of Organization and Management, vol. 3, pages 23-36.
    2. Ziho Kang & Thomas Morin, 2016. "Multi-Attribute Decision Making in a Bidding Game with Imperfect Information and Uncertainty," International Journal of Information Technology & Decision Making (IJITDM), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 15(01), pages 63-81, January.
    3. Schilirò, Daniele, 2017. "Economics versus psychology.Risk, uncertainty and the expected utility theory," MPRA Paper 83366, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Utility theory; Prospect theory; Value function; Risk attitude;

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • G0 - Financial Economics - - General

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