Sports Sentiment and Tipping Behavior

57 Pages Posted: 19 Oct 2017 Last revised: 27 Oct 2017

See all articles by Qi Ge

Qi Ge

Vassar College - Department of Economics

Date Written: October 4, 2017


This paper utilizes a high frequency dataset on taxi rides in New York City to investigate how emotions due to sporting event outcomes affect passengers' tipping behavior. I formulate and empirically test a reference-dependent preferences framework of tipping behavior. The results indicate that the tipping amounts are driven by deviations from expectations much more so than wins and losses, with the most salient effects found under unexpected close wins. However, there is no support for loss aversion. The findings suggest that loss averse behavior may be subdued in the presence of social norms while surprises can result in freedom on the upside of tipping.

Keywords: reference-dependent preferences; tipping behavior; social norms

JEL Classification: D03, D12, L83, Z2

Suggested Citation

Ge, Qi, Sports Sentiment and Tipping Behavior (October 4, 2017). Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, Forthcoming, Available at SSRN:

Qi Ge (Contact Author)

Vassar College - Department of Economics ( email )

124 Raymond Avenue
Poughkeepsie, NY 12604
United States

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