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Internal Inconsistency and Risk Aversion: Implications on Smoking Decisions/Consistencia interna y aversión al riesgo: implicaciones en la decisión de fumar



    (Dpto. de Economía y Organización de Empresa, Universidad de Zaragoza. España.)



    (Dpto. de Psicología y Sociología, Universidad de Zaragoza. España.)

The main contribution of this paper is an analysis of the nature of the link between internal coherence and risk aversion. Both variables play an important role in individual decisions concerning risk behaviors. We compare the levels of internal consistency and risk aversion among smokers and non-smokers. To measure the individual internal coherence and risk aversion, we use a survey that includes lottery questions. Our results confirm that smokers are consistent in their decisions and they behave as risk averse. These results should be treated with circumspection as lottery questions are based on monetary expectations that depend on socio-economic conditions and they obviate other dimensions such as social recognition. La principal contribución de este artículo es analizar la naturaleza de la asociación entre la coherencia interna y la aversión al riesgo. Ambas variables juegan un papel principal en las decisiones individuales sobre comportamientos de riesgo, tal que como caso particular, comparamos los niveles consistencia interna y aversión al riesgo entre fumadores y no fumadores. Para medir la coherencia interna y la aversión al riesgo individual, recurrimos a una encuesta que incluye preguntas de loterías. Nuestros resultados confirman que los fumadores son consistentes en sus decisiones, y de hecho, se comportan como adversos al riesgo. Estos resultados hay que tomarlos con cautela, pues las preguntas sobre loterías se basan principalmente en expectativas monetarias que dependen de condiciones socio-económicas obviando otras dimensiones como el reconocimiento social.

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Article provided by Estudios de Economía Aplicada in its journal Estudios de Economía Aplicada.

Volume (Year): 29 (2011)
Issue (Month): (Abril)
Pages: 387 (18 págs.)

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Handle: RePEc:lrk:eeaart:29_1_11
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  1. Schunk, Daniel & Winter, Joachim, 2009. "The relationship between risk attitudes and heuristics in search tasks: A laboratory experiment," Munich Reprints in Economics 19880, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  2. Chaloupka, Frank J. & Wechsler, Henry, 1997. "Price, tobacco control policies and smoking among young adults," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 359-373, June.
  3. Grant, Simon & Quiggin, John, 2005. "Increasing uncertainty: a definition," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 117-141, March.
  4. Viscusi, W Kip, 1990. "Do Smokers Underestimate Risks?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(6), pages 1253-69, December.
  5. Eugene M. Lewit & Douglas Coate, 1981. "The Potential for Using Excise Taxes to Reduce Smoking," NBER Working Papers 0764, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Blondel, Serge & Loheac, Youenn & Rinaudo, Stephane, 2007. "Rationality and drug use: An experimental approach," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 643-658, May.
  7. Keeler, Theodore E. & Hu, Teh-Wei & Barnett, Paul G. & Manning, Williard G., 1993. "Taxation, regulation, and addiction: A demand function for cigarettes based on time-series evidence," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 1-18, April.
  8. Chris Starmer, 2000. "Developments in Non-expected Utility Theory: The Hunt for a Descriptive Theory of Choice under Risk," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 38(2), pages 332-382, June.
  9. Rosa Duarte & José Escario & José Molina, 2006. "The psychosocial behaviour of young Spanish smokers," Journal of Consumer Policy, Springer, vol. 29(2), pages 176-189, June.
  10. Warneryd, Karl-Erik, 1996. "Risk attitudes and risky behavior," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 17(6), pages 749-770, December.
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