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On Individual Cursedness - How personality shapes individuals' sensitivity to incur a winner's curse -

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  • Nadine Chlaß

    () (School of Economics and Business Administration FSU Jena)

Abstract

The winner's curse is a well-known deviation from rational self-interest in decision-making under asymmetric information. Yet, most prominent explanations for the curse have experimentally been ruled out so far. In particular, the curse did neither seem to emanate from a lack of experience with a given task (Grosskopf et al. 2007), nor from the complexity of the decision task, nor level-k thinking, nor a disability to infer information from others' actions (Charness and Levin 2009), (Ivanov et al. 2010). This paper elicits individuals' sensitivity to incur a winner's curse in a common-value auction where the explanations above do not apply, tracks down the potential source of the curse, and tests to what extent individuals' cursedness evolves (Fudenberg 2006). It finds that the curse is tightly associated with a relatively stable individual characteristic - individuals' personality traits. Personality traits explain individuals' initial cursedness, and also govern whether individuals unlearn, or instead, acquire the curse. I review biological evidence on how personality influences individuals' handling of information to explain why personality matters here.

Suggested Citation

  • Nadine Chlaß, 2011. "On Individual Cursedness - How personality shapes individuals' sensitivity to incur a winner's curse -," Jena Economic Research Papers 2011-027, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
  • Handle: RePEc:jrp:jrpwrp:2011-027
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    File URL: http://pubdb.wiwi.uni-jena.de/pdf/wp_2011_027.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Vincent P. Crawford & Miguel A. Costa-Gomes & Nagore Iriberri, 2010. "Strategic Thinking," Levine's Working Paper Archive 661465000000001148, David K. Levine.
    2. Drew Fudenberg, 2006. "Advancing Beyond Advances in Behavioral Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 44(3), pages 694-711, September.
    3. Miettinen, Topi, 2009. "The partially cursed and the analogy-based expectation equilibrium," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 105(2), pages 162-164, November.
    4. Asen Ivanov & Dan Levin & Muriel Niederle, 2010. "Can Relaxation of Beliefs Rationalize the Winner's Curse?: An Experimental Study," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 78(4), pages 1435-1452, July.
    5. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
    6. Greiner, Ben, 2004. "An Online Recruitment System for Economic Experiments," MPRA Paper 13513, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Brit Grosskopf & Yoella Bereby-Meyer & Max Bazerman, 2007. "On the Robustness of the Winner’s Curse Phenomenon," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 63(4), pages 389-418, December.
    8. George A. Akerlof, 1970. "The Market for "Lemons": Quality Uncertainty and the Market Mechanism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 84(3), pages 488-500.
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    Cited by:

    1. Zaby, Alexandra & Güth, Werner & Pull, Kerstin & Stadler, Manfred, 2014. "Compulsory Disclosure of Private Information - Theoretical and Experimental Results for the Acquiring-a-Company Game," Annual Conference 2014 (Hamburg): Evidence-based Economic Policy 100520, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    2. repec:bla:germec:v:18:y:2017:i:4:p:444-467 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Werner Güth & Kerstin Pull & Manfred Stadler & Alexandra K. Zaby, 2017. "Blindfolded vs. Informed Ultimatum Bargaining – A Theoretical and Experimental Analysis," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 18(4), pages 444-467, November.
    4. Hammond, Robert G. & Morrill, Thayer, 2016. "Personality traits and bidding behavior in competing auctions," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 39-55.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    asymmetric information; winner's curse; personality traits;

    JEL classification:

    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness

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