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How to Split Gains and Losses? Experimental Evidence of Dictator and Ultimatum Games

Thomas Neumann, Sabrina Kierspel (), Ivo Windrich (), Roger Berger () and Bodo Vogt ()
Additional contact information
Sabrina Kierspel: Chair in Empirical Economics, Otto-von-Guericke-University Magdeburg, Postbox 4120, 39016 Magdeburg, Germany
Ivo Windrich: Institute of Sociology, University of Leipzig, Beethovenstr. 15, 04107 Leipzig, Germany
Roger Berger: Institute of Sociology, University of Leipzig, Beethovenstr. 15, 04107 Leipzig, Germany
Bodo Vogt: Chair in Empirical Economics, Otto-von-Guericke-University Magdeburg, Postbox 4120, 39016 Magdeburg, Germany

Games, 2018, vol. 9, issue 4, 1-19

Abstract: Previous research has typically focused on distribution problems that emerge in the domain of gains. Only a few studies have distinguished between games played in the domain of gains from games in the domain of losses, even though, for example, prospect theory predicts differences between behavior in both domains. In this study, we experimentally analyze players’ behavior in dictator and ultimatum games when they need to divide a monetary loss and then compare this to behavior when players have to divide a monetary gain. We find that players treat gains and losses differently in that they are less generous in games over losses and react differently to prior experiences. Players in the dictator game become more selfish after they have had the experience of playing an ultimatum game first.

Keywords: dictator game; ultimatum game; gains; losses; equal split; experimental economics (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C C7 C70 C71 C72 C73 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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