The Truth About Tattoos
11 Pages Posted: 27 Jun 2018
Date Written: June 18, 2018
Despite their ubiquity, tattoos continue to be associated with dishonesty. Yet, scarce behavioral evidence exists. We test whether the tattooed and non-tattooed differ in their dishonest reporting in two consecutive incentivized experiments. First, subjects toss a coin privately five times and receive payment for each heads reported. After, subjects perform five additional coin tosses with the payment for each heads reported increased tenfold. We find few differences in the reporting behavior between the tattooed and non-tattooed in the number of heads reported in either reporting task or the difference between the two. Strategic dishonesty is limited to a small minority of subjects and to only one additional reported heads in the high-stakes tosses.
Keywords: experimental economics, tattoo, honesty, strategic cheating
JEL Classification: C91, Z10
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation