Are You Risk Averse over Other People's Money?
Decisions with uncertain outcomes are often made by one party in settings where another party bears the consequences. Whenever an individual is delegated to make decisions that affect others, such as in the typical corporate structure, does the individual make decisions that reflect the risk preferences of the party bearing the consequences? We examine this question in two simple settings, lottery choices and sealed-bid auctions, using controlled laboratory experiments. We find that when an individual makes a decision for an anonymous stranger, there is a tendency to exhibit less risk aversion. This reduction in risk aversion is relative to his or her own preferences, and it is also relative to his or her belief about the preferences of others. This result has significant implications for the design of contracts between principals and agents.
Volume (Year): 77 (2011)
Issue (Month): 4 (April)
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.southerneconomic.org/|
More information through EDIRC
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sej:ancoec:v:77:4:y:2011:p:901-913. 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: (Laura Razzolini)
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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.