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Risk Aversion in Cumulative Prospect Theory

  • U Schmidt
  • H Zank

This paper characterizes the conditions for risk aversion in cumulative prospect theory where risk aversion is defined in the strong sense (Rothshild Stiglitz 1970). Under weaker assumptions than differentiability we show that risk aversion implies convex weighting functions for gains and for losses but not necessarily a concave utility function. Also, we investigate the exact relationship between loss aversion and risk aversion. We illustrate the analysis by considering two special cases of cumulative prospect theory and show that risk aversion and convex utility may coexist.

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File URL: http://www.socialsciences.manchester.ac.uk/medialibrary/economics/discussionpapers/pdf/0207.pdf
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Paper provided by Economics, The University of Manchester in its series The School of Economics Discussion Paper Series with number 0207.

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Date of creation: 2002
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Handle: RePEc:man:sespap:0207
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  1. Amos Tversky & Daniel Kahneman, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Levine's Working Paper Archive 7656, David K. Levine.
  2. Hong, Chew Soo & Karni, Edi & Safra, Zvi, 1987. "Risk aversion in the theory of expected utility with rank dependent probabilities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 370-381, August.
  3. Mohammed Abdellaoui, 2000. "Parameter-Free Elicitation of Utility and Probability Weighting Functions," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 46(11), pages 1497-1512, November.
  4. Michael H. Birnbaum & Jeffrey P. Bahra, 2007. "Gain-Loss Separability and Coalescing in Risky Decision Making," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 53(6), pages 1016-1028, June.
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  7. Rothschild, Michael & Stiglitz, Joseph E., 1970. "Increasing risk: I. A definition," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 225-243, September.
  8. Chateauneuf, Alain & Cohen, Michele, 1994. "Risk Seeking with Diminishing Marginal Utility in a Non-expected Utility Model," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 9(1), pages 77-91, July.
  9. U Schmidt & H Zank, 2002. "What is Loss Aversion?," The School of Economics Discussion Paper Series 0209, Economics, The University of Manchester.
  10. Wakker, Peter P. & Zank, Horst, 2002. "A simple preference foundation of cumulative prospect theory with power utility," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 46(7), pages 1253-1271, July.
  11. David Schmeidler, 1989. "Subjective Probability and Expected Utility without Additivity," Levine's Working Paper Archive 7662, David K. Levine.
  12. Han Bleichrodt & Jose Luis Pinto, 2000. "A Parameter-Free Elicitation of the Probability Weighting Function in Medical Decision Analysis," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 46(11), pages 1485-1496, November.
  13. Wakker, Peter & Tversky, Amos, 1993. " An Axiomatization of Cumulative Prospect Theory," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 7(2), pages 147-75, October.
  14. Kobberling, Veronika & Wakker, Peter P., 2005. "An index of loss aversion," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 122(1), pages 119-131, May.
  15. Quiggin, John, 1982. "A theory of anticipated utility," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 323-343, December.
  16. Wakker, Peter & Erev, Ido & Weber, Elke U, 1994. "Comonotonic Independence: The Critical Test between Classical and Rank-Dependent Utility Theories," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 9(3), pages 195-230, December.
  17. Abdellaoui, Mohammed & Vossman, Frank & Weber, Martin, 2003. "Choice-Based Elicitation and Decomposition of Decision Weights for Gains and Losses Under Uncertainty," CEPR Discussion Papers 3756, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  18. Yaari, Menahem E, 1987. "The Dual Theory of Choice under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(1), pages 95-115, January.
  19. Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1992. " Advances in Prospect Theory: Cumulative Representation of Uncertainty," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 5(4), pages 297-323, October.
  20. Birnbaum, Michael H & Navarrete, Juan B, 1998. "Testing Descriptive Utility Theories: Violations of Stochastic Dominance and Cumulative Independence," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 17(1), pages 49-78, October.
  21. Chateauneuf, A. & Wakker, P., 1998. "An Axiomatization of Cumulative Prospect Theory for Decision Under Risk," Papiers d'Economie Mathématique et Applications 98.51, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1).
  22. Shlomo Benartzi & Richard H. Thaler, 1995. "Myopic Loss Aversion and the Equity Premium Puzzle," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(1), pages 73-92.
  23. U Schmidt & H Zank, 2002. "Linear Cumulative Prospect Theory with Applications to Portfolio Selection and Insurance Demand," The School of Economics Discussion Paper Series 0208, Economics, The University of Manchester.
  24. George Wu & Richard Gonzalez, 1996. "Curvature of the Probability Weighting Function," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 42(12), pages 1676-1690, December.
  25. Starmer, Chris & Sugden, Robert, 1989. " Probability and Juxtaposition Effects: An Experimental Investigation of the Common Ratio Effect," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 2(2), pages 159-78, June.
  26. Michael H. Birnbaum, 2005. "Three New Tests of Independence That Differentiate Models of Risky Decision Making," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 51(9), pages 1346-1358, September.
  27. R. Luce & A. Marley, 2005. "Ranked Additive Utility Representations of Gambles: Old and New Axiomatizations," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 30(1), pages 21-62, January.
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