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Discounting Behavior in Problem Gambling

Referierte Aufsätze Web of Science

Patrick Ring, Catharina C. Probst, Levent Neyse, Stephan Wolff, Christian Kaernbach, Thilo van Eimeren, Ulrich Schmidt

In: Journal of Gambling Studies 38 (2022), 2, S. 529-543


Problem gamblers discount delayed rewards more rapidly than do non-gambling controls. Understanding this impulsivity is important for developing treatment options. In this article, we seek to make two contributions: First, we ask which of the currently debated economic models of intertemporal choice (exponential versus hyperbolic versus quasi-hyperbolic) provides the best description of gamblers’ discounting behavior. Second, we ask how problem gamblers differ from habitual gamblers and non-gambling controls within the most favored parametrization. Our analysis reveals that the quasi-hyperbolic discounting model is strongly favored over the other two parametrizations. Within the quasi-hyperbolic discounting model, problem gamblers have both a significantly stronger present bias and a smaller long-run discount factor, which suggests that gamblers’ impulsivity has two distinct sources.

Levent Neyse

Research Associate in the German Socio-Economic Panel study Department

Keywords: Time preferences, Discounting, Risk, Incentives, Gambling