Monday, October 09, 2017

Richard Thaler wins the Nobel for behavioral economics

Sikh Girl  - The Instagram poet Rupi Kaur outsells Homer 10 to 1. Her secret? Human experience, aestheticized and monetized, rendered inspirational and relatable... Nudge nudge -  Last summer, the New York Times’ Inside the List feature credited her appeal to an “artless vulnerability, like a cross between Charles Bukowski and Cat Power.” Turning Thaler to Dollar  »

The thaler was a silver coin used throughout Europe for almost four hundred years. Its name lives on in the many Slavic currencies called .... thalers and thaler-sized coins were minted all over with equivalent coins such as the  ... To begin with, the name "thaler" was used as an abbreviation of "Joachimsthaler", a coin type from the town of Joachimsthal in the Kingdom of Bohemia (now the Czech Republic), where there were silver mines and the first such coins were minted in 1518. This original Bohemian thaler carried a lion, from the coat of arms of the Kingdom of Bohemia, on its reverse side.
Etymologically, Thal is German for "valley" - a "thaler" is a person or a thing "from the valley". The Czech spelling was tolar; many varieties of the term are used in different languages. In the 1902 spelling reform, the German spelling was changed from Thal andThaler to Tal and Taler, which however did not affect the spelling of "thaler" in English Kronenthaler - Wikipedia

Richard Thaler, the Economist Who Realized How Crazy MEdia Dragons Are ...

Why the newest Nobel Prize economist confirms a media quandary

Nobel prize in economics awarded to Richard Thaler
The Guardian 

Richard Thaler wins the Nobel for behavioral economics! An excellent choice and one that makes my life easier because you probably already know his work. Indeed his work may already have influenced how much you save for retirement, how you pay your taxes and whether you will donate a kidney or not. In Britain, Thaler’s work was one of the inspirations for the Behavioral Insights Team which applies behavioral economics to public policy. Since being established in 2010 similar teams have been created around the world. Richard on Why MEdia Dragons Are Rich
Richard Thaler worthy more than Crown in this interview
My advice for young researchers at the start of their career is… Work on your own ideas, not your advisor’s ideas (or at least in addition to her ideas). And spend more time thinking and less time reading. Too much reading leads people to think of small variations on existing studies. Admittedly my strategy of writing the paper first and only then reading the literature (or, more likely, letting the referees tell me what they think I should have read) is an extreme one, but it is better than trying to read everything. Try writing the first paper on some topic, not the tenth, and never the 50th. A "nudge unit" set up by David Cameron in the Cabinet Office is working on how to use behavioural economics and market signals to persuade citizens to behave in a more socially integrated way.

The unit, formally known as the Behavioural Insight Team, is being run by David Halpern, a former adviser in Tony Blair's strategy unit, and is taking advice from Richard Thaler, the Chicago professor generally recognised as popularising "nudge" theory – the idea that governments can design environments that make it easier for people to choose what is best for themselves and society.
 Thaler first column is on behavioral economics and mortgages; excerpt:

Some critics contend that behavioral economists have neglected the obvious fact that bureaucrats make errors, too. But this misses thepoint. After all, wouldn’t you prefer to have a qualified, albeit human, technician inspect your aircraft’s engines rather than do it yourself?

The owners of ski resorts hire experts who have previously skied the runs, under various conditions, to decide which trails should be designated for advanced skiers. These experts know more than a newcomer to the mountain. Bureaucrats are human, too, but they can also hire experts and conduct research

NOT long ago, the starting assumption of any economic theory was that humans are rational actors who maximise their utility. Economists summarily dismissed anyone insisting otherwise. But over the past few decades, behavioural economists like Richard Thaler have progressively chipped away at this notion. They combine economics with insights from psychology to show how heavily economic decisions are influenced by cognitive biases. On September 9th Mr Thaler’s work was recognised at the highest level when the Nobel Committee awarded him this year’s prize in economics. Mr Thaler thus becomes one of very few behavioural economists to win the prize.
Mr Thaler’s has been a prolific career, spanning over four decades, the last two of them at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business. His research has touched on subjects as varied as asset prices, personal savings and property crime. For example, Mr Thaler developed a theory of mental accounting, which explains how people making financial decisions look only at the narrow...The Nobel in economics rewards a pioneer of “nudges”

Mortgage broker jailed over false loan documents

Melbourne mortgage broker Najam Shah has been sentenced to five years jail after he admitted to committing mortgage fraud. Mr Shah created false documents to support loan applications to the tune of $170m and more than 500 loan applications between ...

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