Do Risk Preferences Change? Evidence from Panel Data Before and after the Great East Japan Earthquake
60 Pages Posted: 27 Jul 2015 Last revised: 23 Dec 2021
Date Written: July 2015
We investigate whether individuals’ risk preferences change after experiencing a natural disaster, specifically, the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake. Exploiting the panels of nationally representative surveys on risk preferences, we find that men who experienced greater intensity of the Earthquake became more risk tolerant after the Earthquake. Furthermore, these men gamble more, which is consistent with the direction of changes in risk preferences. We find no such pattern for women. Finally, the effects on men’s risk preferences are persistent even five years after the Earthquake at almost the same magnitude as those shortly after the Earthquake.
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