IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/joepsy/v71y2019icp74-87.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Do individuals successfully cover up their lies? Evidence from a compliance experiment

Author

Listed:
  • Dwenger, Nadja
  • Lohse, Tim

Abstract

We study how well individuals in a face-to-face situation can delude others. We exploit data from a laboratory experiment in which participants were asked to assess video-taped statements as being rather truthful or untruthful. The statements are face-to-face tax declarations. The video clips feature each subject twice making the same declaration: One time the subject is reporting honestly, and the other time willingly dishonestly. This allows us to investigate within-subject differences in perceived truthfulness. Our study provides several novel insights. We find that individuals can cover up their lies successfully. On average, a subject is perceived as more truthful if she deceives than if she reports honestly. In particular, individuals with a genuine dishonest appearance manage to increase their perceived truthfulness by up to 14 percent when lying. Moreover, our results show that a subject appears less truthful if she had previously been caught lying. Being detected as a liar previously appears to impair self-confidence and to thereby lower an individual’s ability to deceive.

Suggested Citation

  • Dwenger, Nadja & Lohse, Tim, 2019. "Do individuals successfully cover up their lies? Evidence from a compliance experiment," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 71(C), pages 74-87.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:joepsy:v:71:y:2019:i:c:p:74-87
    DOI: 10.1016/j.joep.2018.08.007
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0167487017305081
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Tim Lohse & Salmai Qari, 2016. "Dubious versus trustworthy faces: what difference does it make for tax compliance?," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 23(6), pages 394-401, April.
    2. Charness, Gary & Dufwenberg, Martin, 2003. "Promises & Partnership," Research Papers in Economics 2003:3, Stockholm University, Department of Economics.
    3. Holm, Håkan J. & Kawagoe, Toshiji, 2010. "Face-to-face lying - An experimental study in Sweden and Japan," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 310-321, June.
    4. Urs Fischbacher & Franziska Föllmi-Heusi, 2013. "Lies In Disguise—An Experimental Study On Cheating," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 11(3), pages 525-547, June.
    5. Michèle Belot & Jeroen Ven, 2017. "How private is private information? The ability to spot deception in an economic game," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 20(1), pages 19-43, March.
    6. Jingnan Chen & Daniel Houser, 2017. "Promises and lies: can observers detect deception in written messages," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 20(2), pages 396-419, June.
    7. Michèle Belot & V. Bhaskar & Jeroen van de Ven, 2012. "Can Observers Predict Trustworthiness?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(1), pages 246-259, February.
    8. Kastlunger, Barbara & Kirchler, Erich & Mittone, Luigi & Pitters, Julia, 2009. "Sequences of audits, tax compliance, and taxpaying strategies," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 405-418, June.
    9. Potters, Jan & Stoop, Jan, 2016. "Do cheaters in the lab also cheat in the field?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 26-33.
    10. Henrik Jacobsen Kleven & Martin B. Knudsen & Claus Thustrup Kreiner & Søren Pedersen & Emmanuel Saez, 2011. "Unwilling or Unable to Cheat? Evidence From a Tax Audit Experiment in Denmark," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 79(3), pages 651-692, May.
    11. Kartik, Navin & Tercieux, Olivier & Holden, Richard, 2014. "Simple mechanisms and preferences for honesty," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 83(C), pages 284-290.
    12. Konrad, Kai A. & Lohse, Tim & Qari, Salmai, 2014. "Deception choice and self-selection – The importance of being earnest," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 107(PA), pages 25-39.
    13. Sanchez-Pages, Santiago & Vorsatz, Marc, 2007. "An experimental study of truth-telling in a sender-receiver game," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 86-112, October.
    14. Vincent P. Crawford, 2003. "Lying for Strategic Advantage: Rational and Boundedly Rational Misrepresentation of Intentions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 133-149, March.
    15. Giorgio Coricelli & Mateus Joffily & Claude Montmarquette & Marie Villeval, 2010. "Cheating, emotions, and rationality: an experiment on tax evasion," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 13(2), pages 226-247, June.
    16. Cai, Hongbin & Wang, Joseph Tao-Yi, 2006. "Overcommunication in strategic information transmission games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 7-36, July.
    17. Uri Gneezy, 2005. "Deception: The Role of Consequences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 384-394, March.
    18. Abeler, Johannes & Becker, Anke & Falk, Armin, 2014. "Representative evidence on lying costs," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 113(C), pages 96-104.
    19. Lundquist, Tobias & Ellingsen, Tore & Gribbe, Erik & Johannesson, Magnus, 2009. "The aversion to lying," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 70(1-2), pages 81-92, May.
    20. Navin Kartik, 2009. "Strategic Communication with Lying Costs," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(4), pages 1359-1395.
    21. Francesco Guala & Luigi Mittone, 2005. "Experiments in economics: External validity and the robustness of phenomena," Journal of Economic Methodology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(4), pages 495-515.
    22. Serra-Garcia, Marta & van Damme, Eric & Potters, Jan, 2011. "Hiding an inconvenient truth: Lies and vagueness," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 244-261, September.
    23. Mittone, Luigi, 2006. "Dynamic behaviour in tax evasion: An experimental approach," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 35(5), pages 813-835, October.
    24. Rajna Gibson & Carmen Tanner & Alexander F. Wagner, 2013. "Preferences for Truthfulness: Heterogeneity among and within Individuals," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(1), pages 532-548, February.
    25. Joel Slemrod & Caroline Weber, 2012. "Evidence of the invisible: toward a credibility revolution in the empirical analysis of tax evasion and the informal economy," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 19(1), pages 25-53, February.
    26. Tim Lohse & Salmai Qari, 2014. "Gender differences in deception behaviour -- the role of the counterpart," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(10), pages 702-705, July.
    27. Matthias Sutter, 2009. "Deception Through Telling the Truth?! Experimental Evidence From Individuals and Teams," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(534), pages 47-60, January.
    28. Gary Charness & Martin Dufwenberg, 2006. "Promises and Partnership," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 74(6), pages 1579-1601, November.
    29. Maciejovsky, Boris & Kirchler, Erich & Schwarzenberger, Herbert, 2007. "Misperception of chance and loss repair: On the dynamics of tax compliance," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 28(6), pages 678-691, December.
    30. Bucciol, Alessandro & Piovesan, Marco, 2011. "Luck or cheating? A field experiment on honesty with children," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 73-78, February.
    31. Bergman, Marcelo & Nevarez, Armando, 2006. "Do Audits Enhance Compliance? An Empirical Assessment of VAT Enforcement," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 59(4), pages 817-832, December.
    32. Francesca Gino & Erin L. Krupka & Roberto A. Weber, 2013. "License to Cheat: Voluntary Regulation and Ethical Behavior," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 59(10), pages 2187-2203, October.
    33. Uri Gneezy & Agne Kajackaite & Joel Sobel, 2018. "Lying Aversion and the Size of the Lie," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 108(2), pages 419-453, February.
    34. Kai A. Konrad & Tim Lohse & Salmai Qari, 2017. "Compliance with Endogenous Audit Probabilities," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 119(3), pages 821-850, July.
    35. Vernon L. Smith, 1994. "Economics in the Laboratory," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(1), pages 113-131, Winter.
    36. Christoph Vanberg, 2008. "Why Do People Keep Their Promises? An Experimental Test of Two Explanations -super-1," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 76(6), pages 1467-1480, November.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Tim Lohse & Salmai Qari, 2019. "Gender Differences in Face-to-Face Deceptive Behavior," CESifo Working Paper Series 7995, CESifo.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Face-to-face communication; Lying; Perceived truthfulness; Lie detection; Laboratory experiment;

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • H31 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Household

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:joepsy:v:71:y:2019:i:c:p:74-87. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Haili He). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/joep .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.