Research report 2007 - Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies
Goods with Negative Utility: The Lottery Market in Germaný
Beckert, Jens; Lutter, Mark
Soziologie des Marktes (Prof. Dr. Jens Beckert)
MPI für Gesellschaftsforschung, Köln
SummaryThe volume of sales in lottery markets is huge. Since less than half the receipts are distributed as winnings, lottery tickets have an expected utility lower than their purchase price. Why do millions of people play the lottery week after week anyway, even though they are losing money?