Perceptual fluency and preference reversal

Xue Ke1, Shengdong Lin2, Xiaoqing Cai1
1Sun Yat-sen University, People’s Republic of China
2Xiamen University, People’s Republic of China
Cite this article:  Ke, X., Lin, S., & Cai, X. (2011). Perceptual fluency and preference reversal. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 39, 947-954.

Volume 39 Issue 7 | e2185 | Published: August 2011 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2011.39.7.947

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We examined how perceptual fluency affects risk preference judgments and explored 1 important boundary condition for its effect. All participants were presented with a lottery scenario that required them to choose between a lottery ticket and a coupon that they could redeem when making a purchase or to set a price at which they would sell the same lottery ticket. Perceptual fluency was elicited by asking participants to read the scenario set out in a way that was either easy or difficult to understand. The results showed that when the likelihood of getting a desirable outcome was relatively high, participants who experienced decreased perceptual fluency tended to be risk aversive in the choice task but risk seeking in the pricing task. Accordingly, several mechanisms are discussed that potentially underlie this preference reversal effect along with theoretical and practical implications of our findings.

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