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Conscientious consumers? Preferences, personality and expenditure in the UK

  • Benjamin Volland

While the importance of personality for understanding differences in labor market outcomes has come to be increasingly appreciated by economic scholars, little research has so far focused on the question whether these measures also explain some of the individual heterogeneity in demand behavior. Using data from the British Household Panel Survey, this study provides evidence for the relationship between the Big Five personality traits and expenditures for food away from home and other leisure activities. Additionally, we assess the relationship between dimensions of personality and individual preferences in predicting expenditure on these categories. Results indicate that aspects of personality predict a non-negligible part of expenditure behavior, and that these effects are independent of the individual’s preference stock. Our results provide empirical support for approaches that include personality as a constraint into economic models of human behavior.

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Paper provided by Philipps University Marburg, Department of Geography in its series Papers on Economics and Evolution with number 2013-05.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: 18 Dec 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:esi:evopap:2013-05
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