The joy of lottery play: evidence from a field experiment
AuthorBurger, MJ; Hendriks, M; Pleeging, E; van Ours, JC
Source TitleExperimental Economics
PublisherSpringer (part of Springer Nature)
University of Melbourne Author/svan Ours, Jan
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsBurger, M. J., Hendriks, M., Pleeging, E. & van Ours, J. C. (2020). The joy of lottery play: evidence from a field experiment. Experimental Economics, 23 (4), pp.1235-1256. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10683-020-09649-9.
Access StatusOpen Access
Buying lottery tickets is not a rational investment from a financial point of view. Yet, the majority of people participate at least once a year in a lottery. We conducted a field experiment to increase understanding of lottery participation. Using representative data for the Netherlands, we find that lottery participation increased the happiness of participants before the draw. Winning a small prize had no effect on happiness. Our results indicate that people may not only care about the outcomes of the lottery, but also enjoy the game. Accordingly, we conclude that lottery participation has a utility value in itself and part of the utility of a lottery ticket is consumed before the draw.
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