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Do Risk Preferences Change? Evidence from Panel Data before and after the Great East Japan Earthquake

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  • Chie Hanaoka
  • Hitoshi Shigeoka
  • Yasutora Watanabe

Abstract

We investigate whether individuals’ risk preferences change after experiencing a natural disaster, specifically, the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake. Exploiting the panels of nationally representative surveys on risk preferences, we find that men who experienced greater intensity of the Earthquake became more risk tolerant after the Earthquake. Furthermore, these men gamble more, which is consistent with the direction of changes in risk preferences. We find no such pattern for women. Finally, the effects on men’s risk preferences are persistent even five years after the Earthquake at almost the same magnitude as those shortly after the Earthquake.

Suggested Citation

  • Chie Hanaoka & Hitoshi Shigeoka & Yasutora Watanabe, 2015. "Do Risk Preferences Change? Evidence from Panel Data before and after the Great East Japan Earthquake," NBER Working Papers 21400, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:21400
    Note: AG EEE HE
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming

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