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Framing, Expectations and Reference Points

Listed author(s):
  • Oliver März
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    Recent theories of expectation-based reference-dependent preferences offer a structured approach of the formation of reference points, yet do not incorporate important context-specific characteristics. One implicit assumption is that individuals form their reference point as expectations by correctly predicting the probabilistic environment they are facing. In an experimental setup, we demonstrate that a simple change in the framing of a decision problem alters the reference point formation by evoking a different moment of first focus. Apart from providing evidence on the limitations of current theories of expectation-based reference dependence, this paper further offers a theoretical extension that overcomes these limitations and allows reference points to be contingent on contextual effects.

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    File URL: https://dipot.ulb.ac.be/dspace/bitstream/2013/240785/3/2016-40-MARZ-framing.pdf
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    Paper provided by ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles in its series Working Papers ECARES with number ECARES 2016-40.

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    Length: 29 p.
    Date of creation: Nov 2016
    Publication status: Published by:
    Handle: RePEc:eca:wpaper:2013/240785
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    1. Götte, Lorenz & Harms, Annette & Sprenger, Charles, 2014. "Randomizing Endowments: An Experimental Study of Rational Expectations and Reference-Dependent Preferences," IZA Discussion Papers 8639, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Charles Sprenger, 2015. "An Endowment Effect for Risk: Experimental Tests of Stochastic Reference Points," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 123(6), pages 1456-1499.
    3. Vincent P. Crawford & Juanjuan Meng, 2011. "New York City Cab Drivers' Labor Supply Revisited: Reference-Dependent Preferences with Rational-Expectations Targets for Hours and Income," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(5), pages 1912-1932, August.
    4. Furnham, Adrian & Boo, Hua Chu, 2011. "A literature review of the anchoring effect," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 35-42, February.
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