Decision making when things are only a matter of time

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

This article gives a comprehensive treatment of preferences regarding time risk—the risk of something happening sooner or later—within the expected discounted utility model. We characterize the signs of the discount function’s derivatives of all orders and show how these signs are decisive for time risk preferences. We introduce the notions of prudent and temperate discounting, and illustrate their importance for economic behavior. Several applications in which an important event is “only a matter of time” are presented. The seminal net present value rule to evaluate investment opportunities is generalized to take into account the timing uncertainty of cash flows.
Original languageEnglish
JournalOperations Research
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2019

Fingerprint

Decision making
Derivatives
Economics
Uncertainty
Investment opportunities
Discounting
Risk preferences
Net present value
Discount
Discounted utility
Cash flow
Economic behaviour

Keywords

  • risk preferences
  • time preferences
  • time risk preferences
  • prudent discounting

Cite this

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title = "Decision making when things are only a matter of time",
abstract = "This article gives a comprehensive treatment of preferences regarding time risk—the risk of something happening sooner or later—within the expected discounted utility model. We characterize the signs of the discount function’s derivatives of all orders and show how these signs are decisive for time risk preferences. We introduce the notions of prudent and temperate discounting, and illustrate their importance for economic behavior. Several applications in which an important event is “only a matter of time” are presented. The seminal net present value rule to evaluate investment opportunities is generalized to take into account the timing uncertainty of cash flows.",
keywords = "risk preferences, time preferences, time risk preferences, prudent discounting",
author = "Sebastian Ebert",
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issn = "0030-364X",
publisher = "INFORMS Inst.for Operations Res.and the Management Sciences",

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Decision making when things are only a matter of time. / Ebert, Sebastian.

In: Operations Research, 2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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