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Does Consistency Predict Accuracy of Beliefs?: Economists Surveyed About PSA

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  • Nathan Berg

    () (Department of Economics, University of Otago, New Zealand)

  • G. Biele
  • Gerd Gigerenzer

Abstract

When economists' subjective beliefs about the sensitivity and positive predictive value of the Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) test are internally consistent (i.e., satisfying Bayes' Rule), their beliefs about prostate cancer risk are less accurate than among those with inconsistent beliefs. Using a loss function framework, we investigate but cannot find evidence that inconsistent beliefs lead to inaccuracy, different PSA decisions, or economic losses. Economists' PSA decisions appear to depend much more on the advice of doctors and family members than on beliefs about cancer risks and the pros/cons of PSA testing, which have little to no joint explanatory power.

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  • Nathan Berg & G. Biele & Gerd Gigerenzer, 2013. "Does Consistency Predict Accuracy of Beliefs?: Economists Surveyed About PSA," Working Papers 1308, University of Otago, Department of Economics, revised Apr 2013.
  • Handle: RePEc:otg:wpaper:1308
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    Cited by:

    1. Martin Binder & Leonhard K. Lades, 2015. "Autonomy-Enhancing Paternalism," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 68(1), pages 3-27, February.
    2. Berg, Nathan, 2014. "Success from satisficing and imitation: Entrepreneurs' location choice and implications of heuristics for local economic development," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 67(8), pages 1700-1709.
    3. repec:beh:jbepv1:v:1:y:2017:i:2:p:11-15 is not listed on IDEAS

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    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles

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