American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, forthcoming
67 Pages Posted: 3 Dec 2018 Last revised: 23 Feb 2019
Date Written: February 18, 2019
We investigate how distorted, yet structured, beliefs can persist in strategic situations. Specifically, we study two-player games in which each player is endowed with a biased-belief function that represents the discrepancy between a player’s beliefs about the opponent's strategy and the actual strategy. Our equilibrium condition requires that: (1) each player choose a best-response strategy to his distorted belief about the opponent's strategy, and (2) the distortion functions form best responses to one another. We obtain sharp predictions and novel insights into the set of stable outcomes and their supporting stable biases in various classes of games.
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