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Weakened weekdays: lockdown disrupts the weekly cycle of risk tolerance

Fedrigo, Virginia, Guenther, Benno, Jenkins, Rob, Galizzi, Matteo M. and Sanders, Jet (2023) Weakened weekdays: lockdown disrupts the weekly cycle of risk tolerance. Scientific Reports, 13 (1). ISSN 2045-2322

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Identification Number: 10.1038/s41598-023-48395-9

Abstract

Risk tolerance decreases from Monday to Thursday and increases on Friday. Antecedents of this weekly risk cycle are difficult to investigate experimentally as manipulating the seven-day cycle is impractical. Here we used temporal disorientation during the UK COVID-19 lockdown to conduct a natural experiment. In two studies, we measured responses to risk in participants with either a strong or weak sense of weekday, after either a short or long period of disruption to their weekly routine by lockdown. In Study 1 (N = 864), the weekly risk cycle was consistent in risk attitude measures specifically to participants who reported a strong sense of weekday. In Study 2 (N = 829), the weekly risk cycle was abolished, even for participants who retained a strong sense of weekday. We propose that two factors sustain the weekly risk cycle. If the sense of weekday is lacking, then weekday will have little effect because the current day is not salient. If weekday associations decay, then weekday will have little effect because the current day is not meaningful. The weekly risk cycle is strong and consistent when (i) sense of weekday is robust and (ii) weekday associations are maintained.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: https://www.nature.com/srep/
Additional Information: © 2023 The Author
Divisions: Management
Psychological and Behavioural Science
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
Date Deposited: 04 Dec 2023 17:45
Last Modified: 23 Apr 2024 09:16
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/120937

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