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Ways of learning in a simple economic setting: a comparison


  • Domenico Colucci

    () (Dipartimento di Matematica per le Decisioni, Universita' degli Studi di Firenze)

  • Vincenzo Valori

    () (Dipartimento di Matematica per le Decisioni, Universita' degli Studi di Firenze)


We analyse the capacity of a range of different learning rules to describe actual human behaviour in the experiment on expectation formation in a cobweb model conducted by Hommes et al. (2000). We find indication of a relative superiority in terms of descriptive capacity of forms of generalised adaptive expectations allowing for endogenous gain parameters.

Suggested Citation

  • Domenico Colucci & Vincenzo Valori, 2005. "Ways of learning in a simple economic setting: a comparison," Working Papers - Mathematical Economics 2005-01, Universita' degli Studi di Firenze, Dipartimento di Scienze per l'Economia e l'Impresa.
  • Handle: RePEc:flo:wpaper:2005-01

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    4. Marimon, Ramon & Sunder, Shyam, 1994. "Expectations and Learning under Alternative Monetary Regimes: An Experimental Approach," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 4(1), pages 131-162, January.
    5. Colucci, Domenico & Valori, Vincenzo, 2005. "Error learning behaviour and stability revisited," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 371-388, March.
    6. Albert Marcet & Juan P. Nicolini, 2003. "Recurrent Hyperinflations and Learning," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(5), pages 1476-1498, December.
    7. William A. Branch, 2004. "The Theory of Rationally Heterogeneous Expectations: Evidence from Survey Data on Inflation Expectations," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(497), pages 592-621, July.
    8. Williams, Arlington W, 1987. "The Formation of Price Forecasts in Experimental Markets," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 19(1), pages 1-18, February.
    9. Evans, George W. & Ramey, Garey, 2006. "Adaptive expectations, underparameterization and the Lucas critique," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(2), pages 249-264, March.
    10. Schmalensee, Richard, 1976. "An Experimental Study of Expectation Formation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 44(1), pages 17-41, January.
    11. Barucci, Emilio, 2000. "Exponentially fading memory learning in forward-looking economic models," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 24(5-7), pages 1027-1046, June.
    12. Evans, George W. & Honkapohja, S., 1998. "Stochastic gradient learning in the cobweb model," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 61(3), pages 333-337, December.
    13. Smith, Vernon L & Suchanek, Gerry L & Williams, Arlington W, 1988. "Bubbles, Crashes, and Endogenous Expectations in Experimental Spot Asset Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(5), pages 1119-1151, September.
    14. Carl Chiarella & Xue-Zhong He & Peiyuan Zhu, 2003. "Fading Memory Learning in the Cobweb Model with Risk Averse Heterogeneous Producers," Research Paper Series 108, Quantitative Finance Research Centre, University of Technology, Sydney.
    15. Honkapohja, Seppo & Mitra, Kaushik, 2004. "Are non-fundamental equilibria learnable in models of monetary policy?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(8), pages 1743-1770, November.
    16. Sterman, John D., 1989. "Deterministic chaos in an experimental economic system," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 1-28, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Anufriev, Mikhail & Bottazzi, Giulio, 2010. "Market equilibria under procedural rationality," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(6), pages 1140-1172, November.
    2. Domenico Colucci & Vincenzo Valori, 2012. "Bounded rationality and parameters’ uncertainty in a simple monetary policy model," Working Papers - Mathematical Economics 2012-03, Universita' degli Studi di Firenze, Dipartimento di Scienze per l'Economia e l'Impresa.
    3. Troy Tassier, 2013. "Handbook of Research on Complexity, by J. Barkley Rosser, Jr. and Edward Elgar," Eastern Economic Journal, Palgrave Macmillan;Eastern Economic Association, vol. 39(1), pages 132-133.
    4. Cars H. Hommes, 2009. "Bounded Rationality and Learning in Complex Markets," Chapters,in: Handbook of Research on Complexity, chapter 5 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    5. Declerck, Francis & Cloutier, L. Martin, 2008. "The Financial Value of Champagne Houses in a Cobweb Economy," 110th Seminar, February 18-22, 2008, Innsbruck-Igls, Austria 49842, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    6. Hommes, Cars, 2011. "The heterogeneous expectations hypothesis: Some evidence from the lab," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 1-24, January.
    7. Domenico Colucci & Vincenzo Valori, 2008. "Asset Price Dynamics When Behavioural Heterogeneity Varies," Computational Economics, Springer;Society for Computational Economics, vol. 32(1), pages 3-20, September.
    8. Domenico Colucci & Vincenzo Valori, 2011. "Can Endogenous Participation Explain Price Volatility? Evidence from an Agent-Based Cobweb Model," Computational Economics, Springer;Society for Computational Economics, vol. 38(3), pages 425-437, October.
    9. Mikhail Anufriev & Cars Hommes & Raoul Philipse, 2013. "Evolutionary selection of expectations in positive and negative feedback markets," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 23(3), pages 663-688, July.
    10. Antonio Doria, Francisco, 2011. "J.B. Rosser Jr. , Handbook of Research on Complexity, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, UK--Northampton, MA, USA (2009) 436 + viii pp., index, ISBN 978 1 84542 089 5 (cased)," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 78(1-2), pages 196-204, April.
    11. Orlando Gomes, 2008. "Adaptive Learning and Complex Dynamics," Working Papers Series 1 ercwp2108, ISCTE-IUL, Business Research Unit (BRU-IUL).

    More about this item


    heterogeneous agents; expectations; bounded rationality.;

    JEL classification:

    • D84 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Expectations; Speculations


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