Risk behavior for gain, loss, and mixed prospects

Peter Brooks, Simon Peters, Horst Zank

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study extends experimental tests of (cumulative) prospect theory (PT) over prospects with more than three outcomes and tests second-order stochastic dominance principles (Levy and Levy, Management Science 48:1334-1349, 2002; Baucells and Heukamp, Management Science 52:1409-1423, 2006). It considers choice behavior of people facing prospects of three different types: gain prospects (losing is not possible), loss prospects (gaining is not possible), and mixed prospects (both gaining and losing are possible). The data supports the distinction of risk behavior into these three categories of prospects, Further, probability weighting and diminishing sensitivity of utility as predicted by PT are observed. Loss aversion is, however, less pronounced, except for choices where one prospect is degenerate. The data suggests that the probability of losing may be relevant for loss aversion. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media New York.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)153-182
Number of pages29
JournalTheory and Decision
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2014


  • Binary choice
  • Loss aversion
  • Probability weighting
  • Prospect theory
  • Second-order stochastic dominance


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