Decision making for others: the case of loss aversion

Sascha C. Füllbrunn, Wolfgang J. Luhan

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Risky decisions are at the core of economic theory. While many of these decisions are taken on behalf of others rather than for oneself, the existing literature finds mixed results on whether people take more or less risk for others then for themselves. Recent studies suggest that taking decisions for others reduces loss aversion, thereby increasing risk taking on behalf of others. To test this, we elicit loss aversion in three treatments: making risky decisions for oneself, for one other subject, or for the decision maker and another person combined. We find a clear treatment effect when making decisions for others but not when making decisions for both.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)154-156
Number of pages3
JournalEconomics Letters
Early online date18 Oct 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017


  • decision making for others
  • risk taking
  • loss aversion
  • experiment


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