Myopic Loss Aversion: A Behavioral Answer to the Equity Premium Puzzle?

Stocks yield much higher returns than bonds and other riskless securities. In fact, in the last 100 years US equities have seen an 8% average annual real return, compared to only a 1% return for more riskless securities. This gap is called the equity premium puzzle – why are equities valued so much higher than securities? One behavioral theory attributes the equity premium puzzle to what’s known as myopic loss aversion (MLA) – the idea that loss-averse investors (as all investors are) take too short-term a view of their investments, leading them to react overly negatively to short-term losses. We designed the first natural field experimental evidence to show that MLA exists for professional traders.

By | 2018-02-09T11:39:53+00:00 April 7th, 2017|

Three Ways the Internet of Things Is Shaping Consumer Behavior

The interconnection of devices within the “Internet of Things” (IoT) creates new data sources. Companies can now better observe people’s choices and test the effectiveness of different mechanisms to activate and retain more customers. It may also help policymakers overcome one of the most frequent problems of policy design: the lack of personalized content. We argue that the IoT not only disrupts the way we track our actions and monitor our goals, but also allows the identification of effective methods to alter our behavior. This is optimized by the combination of IoT, data analytics and behavioral science.

By | 2018-02-09T11:39:53+00:00 February 28th, 2017|

A Nudge in the Green Direction

Despite good intentions, environmentally friendly attitudes do not always translate into corresponding food choices (the so-called intention-behavior gap). To investigate the potential benefits of behavioral nudges, the Flemish government’s Environmental, Nature and Energy Department, together with its partners, conducted tests in several retail locations. The results of our research are reported in this post.

By | 2018-02-09T11:39:54+00:00 January 23rd, 2017|

Retirement Planning, Psychology, and Behavioral Economics

Planning our retirement is an endeavour we need to undertake sooner or later. A well thought-out pension plan must be able to ensure our well-being during a long period of professional inactivity. However, a striking finding is that people do not save enough for their retirement. They have difficulties to design a retirement plan tailored to their needs and end up with an insufficient pension income and an impoverished lifestyle. Behavioural economics has pointed out some of the problems that affect retirement planning.

By | 2018-02-09T11:39:54+00:00 December 22nd, 2016|

How Donald Trump Won the Election: A Behavioral Economics Explanation

By Tim Gohmann, Ph.D.   While the media focused on Donald Trump’s denigration of women, war heroes, Latinos and Muslims, Trump was building not just support but commitment from his core target — working-class, non-college–educated white males — to get out and vote. What was juvenile and embarrassing to the intellectual was the “silver bullet” [...]

By | 2017-10-31T14:09:41+00:00 November 14th, 2016|

A Run-Down of the CEGA Behavioral Economics in Global Health Conference

“How can we use behavioral insights to nudge individuals into better health decision making?” This is one of the fundamental questions that inspired the third annual Conference on Behavioral Economics (BE) in Global Health at UC Berkeley, organized by the Behavioral Economics in Reproductive Health Initiative (BERI) at the Center for Effective Global Action (CEGA).

By | 2018-02-09T11:39:54+00:00 September 30th, 2016|

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