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Naïve Herding in Rich-Information Settings

Naïve Herding in Rich-Information Settings Abstract In social-learning environments, we investigate implications of the assumption that people naïvely believe that each previous person's action reflects solely that person's private information. Naïve herders inadvertently over-weight early movers' private signals by neglecting that interim herders' actions also embed these signals. Such “social confirmation bias” leads them to herd with positive probability on incorrect actions even in extremely rich-information settings where rational players never do. Moreover, because they become fully confident even when wrong, naïve herders can be harmed, on average, by observing others. (JEL D82, D83 ) http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png American Economic Journal: Microeconomics American Economic Association

Naïve Herding in Rich-Information Settings

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Publisher
American Economic Association
Copyright
Copyright © 2010 by the American Economic Association
Subject
Articles
ISSN
1945-7685
eISSN
1945-7685
DOI
10.1257/mic.2.4.221
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Abstract In social-learning environments, we investigate implications of the assumption that people naïvely believe that each previous person's action reflects solely that person's private information. Naïve herders inadvertently over-weight early movers' private signals by neglecting that interim herders' actions also embed these signals. Such “social confirmation bias” leads them to herd with positive probability on incorrect actions even in extremely rich-information settings where rational players never do. Moreover, because they become fully confident even when wrong, naïve herders can be harmed, on average, by observing others. (JEL D82, D83 )

Journal

American Economic Journal: MicroeconomicsAmerican Economic Association

Published: Nov 1, 2010

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