IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/esi/discus/2006-01.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Are preferences complete? An experimental measurement of indecisiveness under risk

Author

Listed:
  • Eric Danan

    ()

  • Anthony Ziegelmeyer

    ()

Abstract

We propose an experimental design allowing a behavioral test of the axiom of completeness of individual preferences. The central feature of our design consists in enabling subjects to postpone commitment at a small cost. Our main result is that preferences are significantly incomplete. We use lotteries as choice alternatives and we find that risk aversion is globally robust to preference incompleteness.

Suggested Citation

  • Eric Danan & Anthony Ziegelmeyer, 2006. "Are preferences complete? An experimental measurement of indecisiveness under risk," Papers on Strategic Interaction 2006-01, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Strategic Interaction Group.
  • Handle: RePEc:esi:discus:2006-01
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: ftp://papers.econ.mpg.de/esi/discussionpapers/2006-01.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Dhar, Ravi, 1997. "Consumer Preference for a No-Choice Option," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 24(2), pages 215-231, September.
    2. Dubra, Juan & Maccheroni, Fabio & Ok, Efe A., 2004. "Expected utility theory without the completeness axiom," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 115(1), pages 118-133, March.
    3. Luca Rigotti & Chris Shannon, 2005. "Uncertainty and Risk in Financial Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 73(1), pages 203-243, January.
    4. Starmer, Chris & Sugden, Robert, 1991. "Does the Random-Lottery Incentive System Elicit True Preferences? An Experimental Investigation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 971-978, September.
    5. Charles A. Holt & Susan K. Laury, 2002. "Risk Aversion and Incentive Effects," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1644-1655, December.
    6. Dekel, Eddie & Lipman, Barton L & Rustichini, Aldo, 2001. "Representing Preferences with a Unique Subjective State Space," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(4), pages 891-934, July.
    7. Beattie, Jane & Loomes, Graham, 1997. "The Impact of Incentives upon Risky Choice Experiments," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 14(2), pages 155-168, March.
    8. Robin Cubitt & Chris Starmer & Robert Sugden, 1998. "On the Validity of the Random Lottery Incentive System," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 1(2), pages 115-131, September.
    9. Greiner, Ben, 2004. "An Online Recruitment System for Economic Experiments," MPRA Paper 13513, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    10. Arlegi, Ricardo & Nieto, Jorge, 2001. "Incomplete preferences and the preference for flexibility," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 151-165, March.
    11. Sen, Amartya, 1988. "Freedom of choice : Concept and content," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(2-3), pages 269-294, March.
    12. Susan K. Laury, 2006. "Pay One or Pay All: Random Selection of One Choice for Payment," Experimental Economics Center Working Paper Series 2006-24, Experimental Economics Center, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University.
    13. Holt, Charles A, 1986. "Preference Reversals and the Independence Axiom," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(3), pages 508-515, June.
    14. Eliaz, Kfir & Ok, Efe A., 2006. "Indifference or indecisiveness? Choice-theoretic foundations of incomplete preferences," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 61-86, July.
    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. Minardi, Stefania & Savochkin, Andrei, 2015. "Preferences with grades of indecisiveness," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 155(C), pages 300-331.
    2. Pejsachowicz, Leonardo & Toussaert, Séverine, 2017. "Choice deferral, indecisiveness and preference for flexibility," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 170(C), pages 417-425.
    3. Özgür Evren, 2012. "Scalarization Methods and Expected Multi-Utility Representations," Working Papers w0174, New Economic School (NES).
    4. Wilde, Christian & Krahnen, Jan Pieter & Ockenfels, Peter, 2014. "Measuring Ambiguity Aversion: A Systematic Experimental Approach," VfS Annual Conference 2014 (Hamburg): Evidence-based Economic Policy 100557, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    5. Cerreia-Vioglio, Simone & Maccheroni, Fabio & Marinacci, Massimo & Montrucchio, Luigi, 2013. "Ambiguity and robust statistics," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 148(3), pages 974-1049.
      • Simone Cerreia-Vioglio & Fabio Maccheroni & Massimo Marinacci & Luigi Montrucchio, 2011. "Ambiguity and Robust Statistics," Working Papers 382, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
    6. Qiu, Jianying & Ong, Qiyan, 2017. "Indifference or indecisiveness: a strict discrimination," MPRA Paper 81790, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 18 Sep 2017.
    7. Chaikal Nuryakin & Alistair Munro, 2019. "Experiments on lotteries for shrouded and bundled goods: Investigating the economics of fukubukuro," The Japanese Economic Review, Springer, vol. 70(2), pages 168-188, June.
    8. Leonardo Pejsachowicz & Séverine Toussaert, 2017. "Choice deferral, indecisiveness and preference for flexibility," Post-Print hal-02862199, HAL.
    9. Itzhak Gilboa & Fabio Maccheroni & Massimo Marinacci & David Schmeidler, 2010. "Objective and Subjective Rationality in a Multiple Prior Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 78(2), pages 755-770, March.
    10. Elias Bouacida, 2019. "Eliciting Choice Correspondences A General Method and an Experimental Implementation," PSE Working Papers halshs-01998001, HAL.
    11. Cettolin, E. & Riedl, A.M., 2015. "Revealed incomplete preferences under uncertainty," Research Memorandum 016, Maastricht University, Graduate School of Business and Economics (GSBE).
    12. Costa-Gomes, Miguel & Cueva, Carlos & Gerasimou, Georgios, 2014. "Choice, Deferral and Consistency," SIRE Discussion Papers 2015-17, Scottish Institute for Research in Economics (SIRE).
    13. Pejsachowicz, Leonardo & Toussaert, Séverine, 2017. "Choice deferral, indecisiveness and preference for flexibility," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 83566, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    14. Evren, Özgür, 2014. "Scalarization methods and expected multi-utility representations," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 151(C), pages 30-63.
    15. Elias Bouacida, 2019. "Eliciting Choice Correspondences A General Method and an Experimental Implementation," Working Papers halshs-01998001, HAL.
    16. John D. Hey & Yudistira Permana & Nuttaporn Rochanahastin, 2018. "When and how to satisfice: an experimental investigation," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Experiments in Economics Decision Making and Markets, chapter 5, pages 121-137, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    17. Mc Kiernan, Daniel Kian, 2012. "Indifference, indecision, and coin-flipping," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(4), pages 237-246.
    18. Cettolin, Elena & Riedl, Arno, 2019. "Revealed preferences under uncertainty: Incomplete preferences and preferences for randomization," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 181(C), pages 547-585.
    19. Gerasímou, Georgios, 2010. "Consumer theory with bounded rational preferences," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(5), pages 708-714, September.
    20. Costa-Gomes, Miguel & Cueva, Carlos & Gerasimou, Georgios, 2014. "Choice, Deferral and Consistency," 2007 Annual Meeting, July 29-August 1, 2007, Portland, Oregon TN 2015-17, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    21. Cettolin, E. & Riedl, A.M., 2015. "Revealed incomplete preferences under uncertainty," Research Memorandum 016, Maastricht University, Graduate School of Business and Economics (GSBE).
    22. Evren, Özgür & Ok, Efe A., 2011. "On the multi-utility representation of preference relations," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(4-5), pages 554-563.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Galliera, Arianna, 2018. "Self-selecting random or cumulative pay? A bargaining experiment," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 106-120.
    2. James Cox & Vjollca Sadiraj & Ulrich Schmidt, 2015. "Paradoxes and mechanisms for choice under risk," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 18(2), pages 215-250, June.
    3. Jinkwon Lee, 2008. "The effect of the background risk in a simple chance improving decision model," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 36(1), pages 19-41, February.
    4. Nathalie Etchart-Vincent & Olivier l’Haridon, 2011. "Monetary incentives in the loss domain and behavior toward risk: An experimental comparison of three reward schemes including real losses," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 42(1), pages 61-83, February.
    5. Noemí Herranz-Zarzoso & Gerardo Sabater-Grande, 2018. "Framing and repetition effects on risky choices: A behavioral approach," Working Papers 2018/04, Economics Department, Universitat Jaume I, Castellón (Spain).
    6. Yaron Azrieli & Christopher P. Chambers & Paul J. Healy, 2018. "Incentives in Experiments: A Theoretical Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 126(4), pages 1472-1503.
    7. Glenn Harrison & J. Swarthout, 2014. "Experimental payment protocols and the Bipolar Behaviorist," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 77(3), pages 423-438, October.
    8. Arianna Galliera & Noemi Pace, 2015. "To Switch or Not to Switch Payment Scheme? Determinants and Effects in a Bargaining Game," Working Papers 2015:33, Department of Economics, University of Venice "Ca' Foscari".
    9. John Hey & Jinkwon Lee, 2005. "Do Subjects Separate (or Are They Sophisticated)?," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 8(3), pages 233-265, September.
    10. Charness, Gary & Gneezy, Uri & Halladay, Brianna, 2016. "Experimental methods: Pay one or pay all," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 131(PA), pages 141-150.
    11. Brown, Alexander L. & Healy, Paul J., 2018. "Separated decisions," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 101(C), pages 20-34.
    12. Fiore, Annamaria, 2009. "Experimental Economics: Some Methodological Notes," MPRA Paper 12498, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    13. David J. Freeman & Guy Mayraz, 2019. "Why choice lists increase risk taking," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 22(1), pages 131-154, March.
    14. Harrison, Glenn W. & Martínez-Correa, Jimmy & Swarthout, J. Todd, 2015. "Reduction of compound lotteries with objective probabilities: Theory and evidence," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 119(C), pages 32-55.
    15. Galizzi, Matteo M. & Machado, Sara R. & Miniaci, Raffaele, 2016. "Temporal stability, cross-validity, and external validity of risk preferences measures: experimental evidence from a UK representative sample," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 67554, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    16. Herranz-Zarzoso, Noemí & Sabater-Grande, Gerardo & Jaramillo-Gutiérrez, Ainhoa, 2020. "Framing and repetition effects on risky choices: A behavioural approach," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 84(C).
    17. Yaron Azrieli & Christopher P. Chambers & Paul J. Healy, 2020. "Incentives in experiments with objective lotteries," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 23(1), pages 1-29, March.
    18. Guido Baltussen & G. Post & Martijn Assem & Peter Wakker, 2012. "Random incentive systems in a dynamic choice experiment," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 15(3), pages 418-443, September.
    19. Mayrhofer, Thomas & Krieger, Miriam, 2012. "Patient Preferences and Treatment Thresholds under Diagnostic Risk: An Economic Laboratory Experiment," VfS Annual Conference 2012 (Goettingen): New Approaches and Challenges for the Labor Market of the 21st Century 62033, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    20. Morone, Andrea, 2010. "On price data elicitation: A laboratory investigation," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 39(5), pages 540-545, October.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Incomplete preferences; preference for flexibility; risk aversion; indecisiveness; indifference;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D11 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Theory

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    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:esi:discus:2006-01. 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: (Karin Richter) The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask Karin Richter to update the entry or send us the correct email address. General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/mpiewde.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 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.