Richard Posner is against the proposed new Consumer Financial Protection Agency (CFPA). This is, of course, not a surprise. Posner has always been an articulate advocate of the view most often associated with economics at the University of Chicago: market-based outcomes are invariably better than the alternatives, and anything that interferes with consumer choice is a … Continue reading Traditional Chicago Economics Under Pressure: Beyond The Thaler-Posner Debate
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By James Kwak For a class, I read an old (1986) paper by Kahneman, Knetsch, and Thaler on fairness. It’s based on surveys posing various hypothetical situations where businesses can take some action. For example, most people thought that it was OK for a grocer to pass on a wholesale price increase to consumers (Question … Continue reading What a Little Bit of Economics Does to You
By James Kwak Don’t get me wrong: I like behavioral economics as much as the next guy. It’s quite clear that people are irrational in ways that the neoclassical model assumes away, and you can’t see human nature quite the same way after hearing Dan Ariely talk about his experiments on cheating. But I don’t … Continue reading They’re Just Irrational?
Richard Thaler, co-author of Nudge, wrote an op-ed in The New York Times this weekend arguing that we should change the default option for organ donation. Reading the article helped crystallize for me a vague concern I’ve had with all this behavioral economics-inspired, benevolent-paternalistic behavior modification that has gotten so much attention lately among the … Continue reading When a Nudge Becomes a Shove
Brad DeLong cites Underbelly citing The Economist quoting Richard Thaler: The [Efficient Capital Markets] hypothesis has two parts, he says: the “no-free-lunch part and the price-is-right part, and if anything the first part has been strengthened as we have learned that some investment strategies are riskier than they look and it really is difficult to … Continue reading What Is the Efficient Market Hypothesis?
Richard Thaler has a simple argument for plain-vanilla financial products. Mike at Rortybomb deals with some of the predictable objections. This is also similar to Adam Levitin’s position on credit cards, which I wrote about a while back. I’m in favor, although I don’t think it will be enough to simply make the vanilla offering … Continue reading The Finest of the Flavors