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The preference reversal phenomenon was believed to be inconsistent with the transitivity axiom of decision theory. However, recent papers have demonstrated that previously observed preference reversals could be explained by subject violations of the independence axiom or the compound lottery axiom. The present paper reports the results of experiments in which a substantial proportion of subject responses violate the asymmetry axiom. These results are inconsistent with expected utility theory and its generalizations.


Originally published in:

Cox, James C., and Seth Epstein. 1989. “Preference Reversals Without the Independence Axiom”. The American Economic Review 79 (3) : 408–26.

(c) American Economic Association; posted with the permission of the publisher.

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