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The Medium Prizes Paradox: Evidence from a Simulated Casino

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  • Haruvy, Ernan
  • Erev, Ido
  • Sonsino, Doron

Abstract

Mainstream explanations to gambling specify conditions under which human agents are locally risk loving. Such theories, however, fail to explain the typically observed prize distribution of a few large prizes and a large number of medium ones--hence the medium prizes paradox. In the current study we show that adaptive learning models recently proposed in the literature offer a solution. Simulations of such models predict that multiple medium prizes will slow down the decrease (over time) in agents' inclination to gamble. We run a laboratory experiment that supports this explanation and shows that the positive effect of medium prizes on the inclination to gamble increases with time. Copyright 2001 by Kluwer Academic Publishers

Suggested Citation

  • Haruvy, Ernan & Erev, Ido & Sonsino, Doron, 2001. "The Medium Prizes Paradox: Evidence from a Simulated Casino," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 22(3), pages 251-261, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jrisku:v:22:y:2001:i:3:p:251-61
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Aradhna Krishna & M. Utku Ünver, 2008. "Research Note—Improving the Efficiency of Course Bidding at Business Schools: Field and Laboratory Studies," Marketing Science, INFORMS, vol. 27(2), pages 262-282, 03-04.
    2. Yu Wang & Aradhna Krishna, 2006. "Timeshare Exchange Mechanisms," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(8), pages 1223-1237, August.
    3. Per Binde, 2005. "Gambling Across Cultures: Mapping Worldwide Occurrence and Learning from Ethnographic Comparison," International Gambling Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(1), pages 1-27, June.
    4. Roth, Alvin E. & Herzog, Stefan & Hau, Robin & Hertwig, Ralph & Erev, Ido & Ert, Eyal & Haruvy, Ernan & Stewart, Terrence & West, Robert & Lebiere, Christian, 2009. "A Choice Prediction Competition: Choices From Experience and From Description," Scholarly Articles 5343169, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    5. Ido Erev & Ira Glozman & Ralph Hertwig, 2008. "What impacts the impact of rare events," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 36(2), pages 153-177, April.
    6. Jonathan Parke & Adrian Parke, 2013. "Does Size Really Matter? A Review Of The Role Of Stake And Prize Levels In Relation To Gambling-Related Harm," Journal of Gambling Business and Economics, University of Buckingham Press, vol. 7(3), pages 77-110.
    7. Oyarzun, Carlos & Sarin, Rajiv, 2012. "Mean and variance responsive learning," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 75(2), pages 855-866.
    8. Peel, D.A., 2013. "Heterogeneous agents and the implications of the Markowitz model of utility for multi-prize lottery tickets," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 119(3), pages 264-267.

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