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Cognitive Abilities and Behavioral Biases

  • Oechssler, Jörg

    ()

    (Department of Economics, University of Heidelberg)

  • Roider, Andreas

    ()

    (Department of Economics, University of Heidelberg)

  • Schmitz, Patrick W.

    ()

    (Staatswissenschaftliches Seminar, Universität Köln)

We use a simple, three-item test for cognitive abilities to investigate whether established behavioral biases that play a prominent role in behavioral economics and finance are related to cognitive abilities. We find that higher test scores on the Cognitive Reflection Test of Frederick (2005) indeed are correlated with lower incidences of the conjunction fallacy, conservatism in updating probabilities, and overconfidence. Test scores are also significantly related to subjects' time and risk preferences. We find no influence on anchoring. However, even if biases are lower for people with higher cognitive abilities, they still remain substantial.

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File URL: http://www.sfb504.uni-mannheim.de/publications/dp08-05.pdf
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Paper provided by Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim & Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim in its series Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications with number 08-05.

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Length: 13 pages
Date of creation: 19 May 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:xrs:sfbmaa:08-05
Note: Financial support from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, SFB 504, at the University of Mannheim, is gratefully acknowledged.
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  1. Mathias Drehmann & Jörg Oechssler & Andreas Roider, 2002. "Herding and Contrarian Behavior in Financial Markets - An Internet Experiment," Bonn Econ Discussion Papers bgse25_2002, University of Bonn, Germany, revised Apr 2003.
  2. Drehmann, Mathias & Oechssler, Jörg & Roider, Andreas, 2005. "Herding With and Without Payoff Externalities - An Internet Experiment," CEPR Discussion Papers 5310, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Barberis, Nicholas & Thaler, Richard, 2003. "A survey of behavioral finance," Handbook of the Economics of Finance, in: G.M. Constantinides & M. Harris & R. M. Stulz (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Finance, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 18, pages 1053-1128 Elsevier.
  4. Daniel J. Benjamin & Sebastian A. Brown & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2013. "Who Is ‘Behavioral’? Cognitive Ability And Anomalous Preferences," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 11(6), pages 1231-1255, December.
  5. Gary Charness & Dan Levin, 2005. "The Origin of the Winner’s Curse: A Laboratory Study," Levine's Bibliography 666156000000000602, UCLA Department of Economics.
  6. Christelis, Dimitris & Jappelli, Tullio & Padula, Mario, 2010. "Cognitive abilities and portfolio choice," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 18-38, January.
  7. Dohmen, T.J. & Falk, A. & Huffman, D. & Sunde, U., 2009. "Are risk aversion and impatience related to cognitive ability?," Research Memorandum 040, Maastricht University, Maastricht Research School of Economics of Technology and Organization (METEOR).
  8. Andrei Shleifer ad Robert W. Vishny, 1995. "The Limits of Arbitrage," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1725, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  9. Jörg Oechssler & Andreas Roider & Patrick W. Schmitz, 2015. "Cooling Off in Negotiations: Does it Work?," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 171(4), pages 565-588, December.
  10. Shane Frederick, 2005. "Cognitive Reflection and Decision Making," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(4), pages 25-42, Fall.
  11. J. Bradford De Long & Andrei Shleifer & Lawrence H. Summers & Robert J. Waldmann, . "Noise Trader Risk in Financial Markets," J. Bradford De Long's Working Papers _124, University of California at Berkeley, Economics Department.
  12. Summers, Lawrence H, 1986. " Does the Stock Market Rationally Reflect Fundamental Values?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 41(3), pages 591-601, July.
  13. Slonim, Robert & Carlson, James & Bettinger, Eric, 2007. "Possession and discounting behavior," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 97(3), pages 215-221, December.
  14. Abreu, Dilip & Brunnermeier, Markus K., 2002. "Synchronization risk and delayed arbitrage," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(2-3), pages 341-360.
  15. Brañas-Garza, Pablo & Guillen, Pablo & del Paso, Rafael López, 2008. "Math skills and risk attitudes," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 99(2), pages 332-336, May.
  16. Charness, Gary B & Levin, Dan & Karni, Edi, 2008. "On the Conjunction Fallacy in Probability Judgment: New Experimental Evidence," University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series qt2dn4t727, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
  17. Shleifer, Andrei, 2000. "Inefficient Markets: An Introduction to Behavioral Finance," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198292272, June.
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