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Present Bias for Monetary and Dietary Rewards: Evidence from Chinese Teenagers

Author

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  • Cheung, Stephen L.

    () (University of Sydney)

  • Tymula, Agnieszka

    () (University of Sydney)

  • Wang, Xueting

    () (University of Sydney)

Abstract

Economists model self-control problems through time-inconsistent preferences. Empirical tests of these preferences largely rely on experimental elicitation methods using monetary rewards, with several recent studies failing to find present bias for money. In this paper, we compare estimates of present bias for money with estimates for healthy and unhealthy foods. In a within-subjects longitudinal experiment with 697 low-income Chinese high school students we find strong present bias for both money and food, and that individual measures of present bias are moderately correlated across reward types. Our experimental measures of time preferences over money predict field behaviours better than preferences elicited over foods.

Suggested Citation

  • Cheung, Stephen L. & Tymula, Agnieszka & Wang, Xueting, 2020. "Present Bias for Monetary and Dietary Rewards: Evidence from Chinese Teenagers," IZA Discussion Papers 13406, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp13406
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    self-control; quasi-hyperbolic discounting; present bias; adolescents; food rewards;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • D80 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - General
    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making

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