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Informational cascades in the laboratory: Do they occur for the right reasons?

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  • Huck, Steffen
  • Oechssler, Jorg

Abstract

Recently, the theory of informational cascades has been tested in an experiment by Anderson and Holt (1997) who report that their data support the theory amazingly well. In this note we report on an experiment designed to find out whether observed cascades are indeed due to rational Bayesian updating. However, we find little support for rational updating. The simple heuristic "follow your own signal" does much better in explaining our data than Bayesian rationality.
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Suggested Citation

  • Huck, Steffen & Oechssler, Jorg, 2000. "Informational cascades in the laboratory: Do they occur for the right reasons?," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 21(6), pages 661-671, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:joepsy:v:21:y:2000:i:6:p:661-671
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    1. Friedman, Daniel, 1998. "Monty Hall's Three Doors: Construction and Deconstruction of a Choice Anomaly," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(4), pages 933-946, September.
    2. Bikhchandani, Sushil & Hirshleifer, David & Welch, Ivo, 1992. "A Theory of Fads, Fashion, Custom, and Cultural Change in Informational Cascades," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(5), pages 992-1026, October.
    3. Anderson, Lisa R & Holt, Charles A, 1997. "Information Cascades in the Laboratory," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(5), pages 847-862, December.
    4. Abhijit V. Banerjee, 1992. "A Simple Model of Herd Behavior," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(3), pages 797-817.
    5. Samuelson, William & Zeckhauser, Richard, 1988. "Status Quo Bias in Decision Making," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 1(1), pages 7-59, March.
    6. Selten, Reinhard & Abbink, Klaus & Buchta, Joachim & Sadrieh, Abdolkarim, 2003. "How to play (3 x 3)-games.: A strategy method experiment," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 19-37, October.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C9 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments
    • D8 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty

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