NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
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Katsunori (Ken) Yamada

228-3, Shin-Kami-Kosaka, Higashi-osaka City
577-0813
JAPAN

E-Mail: EmailAddress: hidden: you can email any NBER-related person as first underscore last at nber dot org
Institutional Affiliation: Kindai University

NBER Working Papers and Publications

February 2016Income-comparison Attitudes in the US and the UK: Evidence from Discrete-choice Experiments
with Hitoshi Shigeoka: w21998
Economists have long been aware of utility externalities such as a tendency to compare own income with others'. If welfare losses from income comparisons are significant, any governmental interventions that alter such attitudes may have large welfare consequences. We conduct an original online survey of discrete-choice questions to estimate such attitudes in the US and the UK. We find that the UK respondents compare incomes more than US respondents do. We then manipulate our respondents with simple information to examine whether the attitudes can be altered. Our information treatment suggesting that comparing income with others may diminish welfare even when income levels increase makes UK respondents compare incomes more rather than less. Interestingly, US respondents are not affected at ...
 
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