Confidence, Self-Selection and Bias in the Aggregate
The influence of behavioral biases on aggregate outcomes like prices and allocations depends in part on self-selection: whether rational people opt more strongly into aggregate interactions than biased individuals. We conduct a series of betting market, auction and committee experiments using 15 classic cognitive bias tasks. We document that some cognitive errors are strongly reduced through self-selection, while others are not affected at all. A large part of this variation is explained by the quality of people's meta-cognition. In some cognitive tasks, confidence and performance are strongly positively correlated, while for others this link is absent or even negative.
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