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Choosing monetary sequences: theory and experimental evidence
Theory and Decision (2010)
  • Paola Manzini, University of St Andrews
  • Marco Mariotti
  • Luigi Mittone
We formulate and investigate experimentally a model of how individuals choose between time sequences of monetary outcomes. The model assumes that a decision maker uses, sequentially, two criteria to screen options. Each criterion only permits a decision between some pairs of options, while the other options are incomparable according to that criterion. When the first criterion is not decisive, the decision maker resorts to the second criterion to select an alternative. We find that: (1) traditional economic models based on discounting alone cannot explain a significant (almost 30%) proportion of the data no matter how much variability in the discount functions is allowed; (2) our model, despite considering only a specific (exponential) form of discounting, can explain the data much better solely thanks to the use of the secondary criterion; (3) our model explains certain specific patterns in the choices of the “irrational” people. We reject the hypothesis that anomalous behavior is due simply to random “mistakes” around the basic predictions of discounting theories: deviations are not random and there are clear systematic patterns of association between “irrational” choices.
  • Time preferences,
  • Time sequences,
  • Negative Discounting
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Paola Manzini, Marco Mariotti and Luigi Mittone. "Choosing monetary sequences: theory and experimental evidence" Theory and Decision Vol. 69 Iss. 3 (2010) p. 327 - 354
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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons CC_BY-NC-ND International License.