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A Test for Anchoring and Yea-Saying in Experimental Consumption Data

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  • Arthur van Soest
  • Michael Hurd

Abstract

In the experimental module of the AHEAD 1995 data, the sample is randomly split into respondents who get an open-ended question on the amount of total family consumption - with follow-up unfolding brackets (of the form: is consumption $X or more?) for those who answer don't know' or refuse' - and respondents who are immediately directed to unfolding brackets. In both cases, the entry point of the unfolding bracket sequence is randomized. These data are used to develop a nonparametric test for whether people make mistakes in answering the first bracket question, allowing for any type of selection into answering the open-ended question or not. Two well-known types of mistakes are considered: anchoring and yea-saying (or acquiescence). While the literature provides ample evidence that the entry point in the first bracket question serves as an anchor for follow-up bracket questions, it is less clear whether the answers to the first bracket question are already affected by anchoring. We reject the joint hypothesis of no anchoring and no yea-saying at the entry point. Once yea-saying is taken into account

Suggested Citation

  • Arthur van Soest & Michael Hurd, 2004. "A Test for Anchoring and Yea-Saying in Experimental Consumption Data," NBER Working Papers 10462, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:10462 Note: AG
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    Cited by:

    1. Kleinjans, Kristin J. & van Soest, Arthur, 2010. "Nonresponse and Focal Point Answers to Subjective Probability Questions," IZA Discussion Papers 5272, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Cobb-Clark, Deborah A. & Stillman, Steven, 2006. "The Retirement Expectations of Middle-Aged Individuals," IZA Discussion Papers 2449, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. Thomas F. Crossley & Joachim K. Winter, 2014. "Asking Households about Expenditures: What Have We Learned?," NBER Chapters,in: Improving the Measurement of Consumer Expenditures, pages 23-50 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Kristin J. Kleinjans & Jinkook Lee, 2006. "The link between individual expectations and savings: Do nursing home expectations matter?," Economics Working Papers 2006-05, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
    5. Jay Bhattacharya & Adam Isen, 2008. "On Inferring Demand for Health Care in the Presence of Anchoring, Acquiescence, and Selection Biases," NBER Working Papers 13865, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Ulf Böckenholt, 2014. "Modeling Motivated Misreports to Sensitive Survey Questions," Psychometrika, Springer;The Psychometric Society, vol. 79(3), pages 515-537, July.
    7. Munro, Alistair, 2007. "When is some number really better than no number? On the optimal choice between non-market valuation methods," MPRA Paper 8978, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C81 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Data Collection and Data Estimation Methodology; Computer Programs - - - Methodology for Collecting, Estimating, and Organizing Microeconomic Data; Data Access
    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis

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