Taste uncertainty and status quo effects in consumer choice

Graham Loomes, Shepley Orr, Robert Sugden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


We use reference-dependent expected utility theory to develop a model of status quo effects in consumer choice. We hypothesise that, when making their decisions, individuals are uncertain about the utility that will be yielded by their consumption experiences in different ‘taste states’ of the world. If individuals have asymmetric attitudes to gains and losses of utility, the model entails acyclic reference-dependent preferences over consumption bundles. The model explains why status quo effects may vary substantially from one decision context to another and why some such effects may decay as individuals gain market experience.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)113-135
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of Risk and Uncertainty
Publication statusPublished - 2009

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