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Are risk preferences dynamic? Within-subject variation in risk-taking as a function of background music

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  • Halko, Marja Liisa
  • Kaustia, Markku

Abstract

This paper investigates whether preference interactions can explain why risk preferences change over time and across contexts. We conduct an experiment in which subjects accept or reject gambles involving real money gains and losses. We introduce within-subject variation by alternating subjectively liked music and disliked music in the background. We find that favourite music increases risk-taking, and disliked music suppresses risk-taking, compared to a baseline of no music. Several theories in psychology propose mechanisms by which mood affects risktaking, but none of them fully explain our results. The results are, however, consistent with preference complementarities that extend to risk preference.

Suggested Citation

  • Halko, Marja Liisa & Kaustia, Markku, 2012. "Are risk preferences dynamic? Within-subject variation in risk-taking as a function of background music," CFS Working Paper Series 2012/09, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:cfswop:201209
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Risk Taking; Music; Preference Interaction;

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions

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