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Rationally Inattentive Behavior: Characterizing and Generalizing Shannon Entropy

Listed author(s):
  • Andrew Caplin
  • Mark Dean
  • John Leahy

We provide a full behavioral characterization of the standard Shannon model of rational inattention. The key axiom is "Invariance under Compression", which identifies this model as capturing an ideal form of attention-constrained choice. We introduce tractable generalizations that allow for many of the known behavioral violations from this ideal, including asymmetries and complementarities in learning, context effects, and low responsiveness to incentives. We provide an even more general method of recovering attention costs from behavioral data. The data set in which we characterize all behavioral patterns is "state dependent" stochastic choice data.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 23652.

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Date of creation: Aug 2017
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:23652
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  1. Xavier Gabaix, 2014. "A Sparsity-Based Model of Bounded Rationality," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 129(4), pages 1661-1710.
  2. Paola Manzini & Marco Mariotti, 2014. "Stochastic Choice and Consideration Sets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 82(3), pages 1153-1176, 05.
  3. Raj Chetty & Adam Looney & Kory Kroft, 2009. "Salience and Taxation: Theory and Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(4), pages 1145-1177, September.
  4. Bartosz Mackowiak & Mirko Wiederholt, 2009. "Optimal Sticky Prices under Rational Inattention," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(3), pages 769-803, June.
  5. Filip Matêjka & Alisdair McKay, 2015. "Rational Inattention to Discrete Choices: A New Foundation for the Multinomial Logit Model," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(1), pages 272-298, January.
  6. Woodford, Michael, 2009. "Information-constrained state-dependent pricing," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(S), pages 100-124.
  7. repec:eee:gamebe:v:104:y:2017:i:c:p:131-145 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. Christian Hellwig & Sebastian Kohls & Laura Veldkamp, 2012. "Information Choice Technologies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(3), pages 35-40, May.
  9. Mondria, Jordi, 2010. "Portfolio choice, attention allocation, and price comovement," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 145(5), pages 1837-1864, September.
  10. Ricardo Reis, 2006. "Inattentive Producers," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 73(3), pages 793-821.
  11. Andrew Caplin & Daniel Martin, 2015. "A Testable Theory of Imperfect Perception," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 125(582), pages 184-202, 02.
  12. Matthew Gentzkow & Emir Kamenica, 2014. "Costly Persuasion," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(5), pages 457-462, May.
  13. Venky Venkateswaran & Luis Llosa, 2012. "Efficiency With Endogenous Information Choice," 2012 Meeting Papers 660, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  14. Jose Apesteguia & Miguel A. Ballester, 2016. "Single-crossing random utility models," Economics Working Papers 1515, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  15. Luigi Paciello & Mirko Wiederholt, 2014. "Exogenous Information, Endogenous Information, and Optimal Monetary Policy," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 81(1), pages 356-388.
  16. Yusufcan Masatlioglu & Daisuke Nakajima & Erkut Y. Ozbay, 2012. "Revealed Attention," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(5), pages 2183-2205, August.
  17. Andrew Caplin & Daniel Martin, 2015. "A Testable Theory of Imperfect Perception," Post-Print halshs-01155313, HAL.
  18. Andrew Caplin & Mark Dean, 2015. "Revealed Preference, Rational Inattention, and Costly Information Acquisition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(7), pages 2183-2203, July.
  19. Denti, Tommaso & Mihm, Maximilian & de Oliveira, Henrique & Ozbek, Kemal, 2017. "Rationally inattentive preferences and hidden information costs," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 12(2), May.
  20. Stevens, Luminita, 2015. "Coarse Pricing Policies," Staff Report 520, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  21. Sims, Christopher A., 2003. "Implications of rational inattention," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 665-690, April.
  22. Daniel McFadden, 2005. "Revealed stochastic preference: a synthesis," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 26(2), pages 245-264, August.
  23. Rochet, Jean-Charles, 1987. "A necessary and sufficient condition for rationalizability in a quasi-linear context," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 191-200, April.
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