Hummingbird Insight asked two separate groups of medical practitioners a separate but related series of questions on financial and medical probabilities. The questions and voting are recorded below. 

Question 1

Group One were asked if they would prefer to receive $50 today or $100 in six months?

Group Two were asked if they would prefer $50 in six months or $100 in 12 months? 

The results found that 39% of Group One preferred $50 today, compared to 61% who said they’d rather $100 in six months.

For Group Two, 25% preferred $50 in six months while 75% would rather $100 in 12 months. 

Researcher and expert in consumer, cognitive and organisational psychology, Adrian Camilleri, said, “Question 1 showed that people were much more willing to wait six months for an extra $50 when all the payoffs were far into the future compared to today.”

Question 2

Group One were asked if they would take this bet: We flip one fair coin one time. If it lands on heads you gain $110 but if it lands on tails you lose $100?

Group Two were asked if they would take this bet: We flip one fair coin 100 times. Each time it lands on heads you gain $110 but each time it lands on tails you lose $100?

In Group One, 80% of respondents said they wouldn’t take the bet, compared to 20% who would. In Group Two, 46% said no, while 54% would take the bet.

“For Question 2, respondents were much more willing to gamble when the bet was to be played many times. But if the one-off single bet was bad, isn’t this just 100 bad bets?” Camilleri said.

Question 3

Group One were asked if they would prefer: An option offering a 100% chance of $30 or an option offering an 80% chance of $40, otherwise $0. 

Group Two were asked if they would take this bet: An option that has recently paid out the following outcomes: $30, $30, $30, $30, $30, $30, $30, $30, $30, $30? Or an option that has recently paid out the following outcomes: $40, $40, $0, $40, $40, $40, $40, $40, $0, $40?

In Group One, 91% voted for the first option with just 9% opting for the second option. In Group Two, 48% voted for the first option and 52% voted for the second option.

“Question 3 showed that people were much more willing to choose the riskier option when the probabilities of each outcome were not explicitly described,” Camilleri said.

Question 4

Group One were asked if they preferred: An option that could lead to a $150 loss with a probability of 19%? Or an option that could lead to a $30 loss with a probability of 98%?

Group Two were asked if they preferred: An option that could lead to memory loss with a probability of 19%? Or an option that could lead to fever with a probability of 98%? 

In Group One 60% voted for the first option and 40% voted for the second option. In Group Two, 11% voted for the first option and 89% voted for the second option.

With Question 4, we observed that respondents were much more willing to choose an option with a very bad possible outcome when considering options with financial (rather than medical) consequences,” Camilleri said.

 

If you are looking for some content for an upcoming event or would like some preliminary info (short poll) for a client proposal, please reach out to EKAS and we’d be happy to help.

Ekas Research
Ekas Research jaxon@ekas.com.au

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