Experimental Economics

, Volume 15, Issue 4, pp 589–603 | Cite as

Are social preferences related to market performance?



This paper combines laboratory with field data from professional sellers to study whether social preferences are related to performance in open-air markets. The data show that sellers who are more pro-social in a laboratory experiment are also more successful in natural markets: They achieve higher prices for similar quality, have superior trade relations and better abilities to signal trustworthiness to buyers. These findings suggest that social preferences play a significant role for outcomes in natural markets.


Social preferences Market performance External validity Quality misrepresentation Open-air markets 

JEL Classification

C91 C93 D49 


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Copyright information

© Economic Science Association 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of EconomicsMonash UniversityClaytonAustralia

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