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Title:Have you heard the news? How real-life expectations react to publicity PDF Logo
Authors:van der Wiel, Karen
Issue Date:2009
Series/Report no.:IZA discussion papers 4064
Abstract:As evidence is accumulating that subjective expectations influence behavior and that these expectations are sometimes biased, it becomes policy-relevant to know how to influence individuals' expectations. Information in the media is likely to affect how people picture the future. This paper studies the role of public information dissemination, or publicity, in a real-life expectations formation process. For this purpose, an exceptional Dutch dataset on monthly expectations regarding the future eligibility age for old age social security is analyzed. On average, the publicity reaction in eligibility age expectations is small but the differences among subgroups are considerable. I find that higher educated and high income groups hardly adapt their expectations to relevant publicity. On the contrary, those who do not often read a newspaper have a relatively high publicity reaction. A potential explanation for this latter finding is that these groups have low quality initial expectations. If this is true, publicity thus particularly benefits the initially worse informed groups.
Subjects:Expectations
information
media
JEL:D83
D84
H55
Persistent Identifier of the first edition:urn:nbn:de:101:1-20090327323
Document Type:Working Paper
Appears in Collections:IZA Discussion Papers, Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit (IZA)

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