IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/oup/restud/v76y2009i3p1103-1124.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Learning to Wait: A Laboratory Investigation

Author

Listed:
  • Ryan Oprea
  • Daniel Friedman
  • Steven T. Anderson

Abstract

Human subjects decide when to sink a fixed cost C to seize an irreversible investment opportunity whose value V is governed by Brownian motion. The optimal policy is to invest when V first crosses a threshold V* = (1 + w*)C, where the wait option premium w* depends on drift, volatility, and expiration hazard parameters. Subjects in the Low w* treatment on average invest at values quite close to optimum. Subjects in the two Medium and the High w* treatments invested at values below optimum, but with the predicted ordering, and values approached the optimum by the last block of 20 periods. Copyright , Wiley-Blackwell.

Suggested Citation

  • Ryan Oprea & Daniel Friedman & Steven T. Anderson, 2009. "Learning to Wait: A Laboratory Investigation," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(3), pages 1103-1124.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:restud:v:76:y:2009:i:3:p:1103-1124
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/j.1467-937X.2009.00543.x
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    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. Ana Castañeda & Javier Díaz-Giménez & José-Víctor Ríos-Rull, "undated". ""Earnings and Wealth Inequality and Income Taxation: Quantifying the Trade-Offs of Switching to a Proportional Income Tax in the U.S.''," CARESS Working Papres 98-14, University of Pennsylvania Center for Analytic Research and Economics in the Social Sciences.
    2. Christopher D Carroll, 1997. "Why Do the Rich Save So Much?," Economics Working Paper Archive 388, The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics.
    3. William G. Gale & John Karl Scholz, 1994. "Intergenerational Transfers and the Accumulation of Wealth," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(4), pages 145-160, Fall.
    4. Hubbard, R Glenn & Skinner, Jonathan & Zeldes, Stephen P, 1995. "Precautionary Saving and Social Insurance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(2), pages 360-399, April.
    5. Krusell, Per & Smith, Anthony A., 1997. "Income And Wealth Heterogeneity, Portfolio Choice, And Equilibrium Asset Returns," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 1(02), pages 387-422, June.
    6. Michael Sattinger (ed.), 2001. "Income Distribution," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, volume 0, number 2018, April.
    7. Kotlikoff, Laurence J & Summers, Lawrence H, 1981. "The Role of Intergenerational Transfers in Aggregate Capital Accumulation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(4), pages 706-732, August.
    8. Hansen, G D, 1993. "The Cyclical and Secular Behaviour of the Labour Input: Comparing Efficiency Units and Hours Worked," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(1), pages 71-80, Jan.-Marc.
    9. Vincenzo Quadrini, 2000. "Entrepreneurship, Saving and Social Mobility," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 3(1), pages 1-40, January.
    10. Lillard, Lee A & Willis, Robert J, 1978. "Dynamic Aspects of Earning Mobility," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(5), pages 985-1012, September.
    11. Heer, Burkhard, 2001. " Wealth Distribution and Optimal Inheritance Taxation in Life-Cycle Economies with Intergenerational Transfers," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 103(3), pages 445-465, September.
    12. Tauchen, George & Hussey, Robert, 1991. "Quadrature-Based Methods for Obtaining Approximate Solutions to Nonlinear Asset Pricing Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(2), pages 371-396, March.
    13. Hurd, Michael D, 1989. "Mortality Risk and Bequests," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(4), pages 779-813, July.
    14. Attanasio, Orazio P, et al, 1999. "Humps and Bumps in Lifetime Consumption," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 17(1), pages 22-35, January.
    15. Michael D. Hurd & James P. Smith, 2001. "Anticipated and Actual Bequests," NBER Chapters,in: Themes in the Economics of Aging, pages 357-392 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. James B. Davies, 1982. "The Relative Impact of Inheritance and Other Factors on Economic Inequality," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 97(3), pages 471-498.
    17. Gary S. Becker & Nigel Tomes, 1994. "Human Capital and the Rise and Fall of Families," NBER Chapters,in: Human Capital: A Theoretical and Empirical Analysis with Special Reference to Education (3rd Edition), pages 257-298 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    18. Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas & Jonathan A. Parker, 2002. "Consumption Over the Life Cycle," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(1), pages 47-89, January.
    19. Laitner, John, 1992. "Random earnings differences, lifetime liquidity constraints, and altruistic intergenerational transfers," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 135-170, December.
    20. Becker, Gary S & Tomes, Nigel, 1979. "An Equilibrium Theory of the Distribution of Income and Intergenerational Mobility," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1153-1189, December.
    21. Laurence J. Kotlikoff & Kent Smetters & Jan Walliser, 1999. "Privatizing Social Security in the U.S. -- Comparing the Options," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 2(3), pages 532-574, July.
    22. Aaron, Henry J. & Munnell, Alicia H., 1992. "Reassessing the Role for Wealth Transfer Taxes," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 45(2), pages 119-43, June.
    23. repec:cup:macdyn:v:1:y:1997:i:2:p:387-422 is not listed on IDEAS
    24. Davies, James B. & Shorrocks, Anthony F., 2000. "The distribution of wealth," Handbook of Income Distribution,in: A.B. Atkinson & F. Bourguignon (ed.), Handbook of Income Distribution, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 11, pages 605-675 Elsevier.
    25. Karen E. Dynan & Jonathan Skinner & Stephen P. Zeldes, 2004. "Do the Rich Save More?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(2), pages 397-444, April.
    26. Bjorklund, Anders & Jantti, Markus, 1997. "Intergenerational Income Mobility in Sweden Compared to the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(5), pages 1009-1018, December.
    27. Gokhale, Jagadeesh & Kotlikoff, Laurence J. & Sefton, James & Weale, Martin, 2001. "Simulating the transmission of wealth inequality via bequests," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, pages 93-128.
    28. Mariacristina De Nardi & Liqian Ren & Chao Wei, 2000. "Income inequality and redistribution in five countries," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Q II, pages 2-20.
    29. Aaron, Henry J. & Munnell, Alicia H., 1992. "Reassessing the Role for Wealth Transfer Taxes," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 45(2), pages 119-143, June.
    30. Huggett, Mark, 1996. "Wealth distribution in life-cycle economies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(3), pages 469-494, December.
    31. James Poterba, 1998. "Estate and Gift Taxes and Incentives for Inter Vivos Giving in the United States," NBER Working Papers 6842, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    32. Hansson, B., 1989. "Construction Of Swedish Capital Stocks, 1963-87: An Application Of The Hulten-Wykoff Studies," Papers 1989d, Uppsala - Economic Studies.
    33. Shinichi Nishiyama, 2000. "Measuring Time Preference and Parental Altruism: Technical Paper 2000-7," Working Papers 13333, Congressional Budget Office.
    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. Maart, Syster Christin & Musshoff, Oliver, 2011. "Optimal Timing of Farmland Investment - An Experimental Study on Farmers' Decision Behavior -," 2011 Annual Meeting, July 24-26, 2011, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 103693, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    2. Tubetov, Dulat & Maart, Syster Christin & Musshoff, Oliver, 2012. "The comparison of investment behaviors of Kazakhstani and German farmers: An experimental approach," 86th Annual Conference, April 16-18, 2012, Warwick University, Coventry, UK 134770, Agricultural Economics Society.
    3. Maack, Moritz & Maart, Syster Christin & Musshoff, Oliver, 2012. "The Impact of Price Floors -A Real Options Based Experimental Approach-," 2012 Conference (56th), February 7-10, 2012, Freemantle, Australia 124328, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.
    4. Jacopo Magnani & Aspen Gorry & Ryan Oprea, 2016. "Time and State Dependence in an Ss Decision Experiment," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 8(1), pages 285-310, January.
    5. Paul Viefers, 2012. "Should I Stay or Should I Go?: A Laboratory Analysis of Investment Opportunities under Ambiguity," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1228, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    6. Tubetov, Dulat & Maart, Syster Christin & Musshoff, Oliver, 2012. "Comparison of the Investment Behavior of German and Kazakhstani Farmers: an Experimental Approach," Discussion Papers 122422, Georg-August-Universitaet Goettingen, GlobalFood, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development.
    7. Ihli, Hanna Julia & Maart, Syster Christin & Musshoff, Oliver, 2012. "Investment and Disinvestment in Irrigation Technology – An Experimental Analysis of Farmers’ Decision Behavior –," 2012 Annual Meeting, August 12-14, 2012, Seattle, Washington 124532, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    8. Musshoff, Oliver & Maart-Noelck, Syster Christin, 2014. "An experimental analysis of the behavior of forestry decision-makers — The example of timing in sales decisions," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 31-39.
    9. Syster C. Maart-Noelck & Oliver Musshoff, 2013. "Investing Today or Tomorrow? An Experimental Approach to Farmers’ Decision Behaviour," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(2), pages 295-318, June.
    10. Wilfred Amaldoss & Teck-Hua Ho & Aradhna Krishna & Kay-Yut Chen & Preyas Desai & Ganesh Iyer & Sanjay Jain & Noah Lim & John Morgan & Ryan Oprea & Joydeep Srivasatava, 2008. "Experiments on strategic choices and markets," Marketing Letters, Springer, vol. 19(3), pages 417-429, December.
    11. Tubetov, Dulat & Maart, Syster Christin & Musshoff, Oliver, 2012. "Comparison of the investment behavior of Kazakhstani and German farmers: An experimental approach," 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil 125218, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    12. Sandri, Serena & Schade, Christian & Mußhoff, Oliver & Odening, Martin, 2010. "Holding on for too long? An experimental study on inertia in entrepreneurs' and non-entrepreneurs' disinvestment choices," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 76(1), pages 30-44, October.
    13. Steven T. Anderson & Daniel Friedman & Ryan Oprea, 2010. "Preemption Games: Theory and Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(4), pages 1778-1803, September.
    14. Ihli, Hanna Julia & Musshoff, Oliver, 2013. "Understanding the Investment Behavior of Ugandan Smallholder Farmers: An Experimental Analysis," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 150331, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    15. Tubetov, Dulat & Maart, Syster Christin & Musshoff, Oliver, 2012. "Experimental examination of land investment decisions with volatile returns A comparison between Kazakhstani and German farmers," 123rd Seminar, February 23-24, 2012, Dublin, Ireland 122454, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    16. Ryan Oprea & Bart J. Wilson & Arthur Zillante, 2013. "War Of Attrition: Evidence From A Laboratory Experiment On Market Exit," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 51(4), pages 2018-2027, October.
    17. Ihli, Hanna Julia & Musshoff, Oliver, 2013. "Investment Behavior of Ugandan Smallholder Farmers: An Experimental Analysis," Discussion Papers 154775, Georg-August-Universitaet Goettingen, GlobalFood, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development.
    18. Maart, Syster Christin & Musshoff, Oliver & Odening, Martin & Schade, Christian, 2011. "Closing down the Farm: An Experimental Analysis of Disinvestment Timing," 2011 International Congress, August 30-September 2, 2011, Zurich, Switzerland 114375, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    19. Hermann, Daniel & Musshoff, Oliver & Agethen, Katrin, 2014. "I will never switch sides: an experimental approach to determine drivers for investment decisions of conventional and organic hog farmers," 2014 International Congress, August 26-29, 2014, Ljubljana, Slovenia 183084, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    20. Paul Viefers & Philipp Strack, 2014. "Too Proud to Stop: Regret in Dynamic Decisions," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1401, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    21. Maart, Syster Christin & Musshoff, Oliver & Odening, Martin & Schade, Christian, 2010. "Zum Desinvestitionsverhalten Landwirtschaftlicher Unternehmer: Ergebnisse Einer Experimentellen Untersuchung," 50st Annual Conference, Braunschweig, Germany, September 29-October 1, 2010 93943, German Association of Agricultural Economists (GEWISOLA).
    22. Ciril Bosch-Rosa, 2014. "That's how we roll: an experiment on rollover risk," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2014-048, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.

    More about this item

    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:oup:restud:v:76:y:2009:i:3:p:1103-1124. 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: (Oxford University Press) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: .

    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.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using 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.