#79198 | AsPredicted

'Retirement experiments - Koehler, Liu, Langstaff'
(AsPredicted #79198)

Created:       11/07/2021 07:16 AM (PT)

This is an anonymized version of the pre-registration.  It was created by the author(s) to use during peer-review.
A non-anonymized version (containing author names) should be made available by the authors when the work it supports is made public.

1) Have any data been collected for this study already?
No, no data have been collected for this study yet.

2) What's the main question being asked or hypothesis being tested in this study?
This study is a partial replication of Koehler, Langstaff and Liu (2015, Journal of Economic Psychology) - "A simulated financial savings task for studying consumption and retirement decision making", using a modified/adapted design. Their main research questions we re-examine are whether participants smooth their consumption over periods of the life-cycle, and whether the relative length of retirement (as a fraction of total life) affects savings behavior.

3) Describe the key dependent variable(s) specifying how they will be measured.
The key dependent variables are retirement savings (amount held in savings at the point of retirement) and spending variability (standard deviation of discretionary spending in all periods of each [experimental] life).

4) How many and which conditions will participants be assigned to?
Participants will be randomly assigned to Short Retirement (retirement length of 4 periods out of 16 of the full experimental life) or Long Retirement (8 periods out of 16) treatments. They will play two rounds in their initially assigned condition and switch to the other treatment for another two rounds.

5) Specify exactly which analyses you will conduct to examine the main question/hypothesis.
Following the original paper, we will use Mixed-Model ANOVA with retirement length as within-subject variable. We will extend the analysis using a between-subject indicator for the sequencing of treatments.

6) Describe exactly how outliers will be defined and handled, and your precise rule(s) for excluding observations.
We will exclude subjects that (1) take less than 30 seconds to read through the instructions; (2) answer more than two wrong questions in a multiple-choice quiz after a trial round in a first attempt, or any wrong question in a second attempt; (3) take more than 60 minutes to finish all tasks after completing the quiz; or (4) drop-out or abandon the experiment before its last screen.

7) How many observations will be collected or what will determine sample size?
No need to justify decision, but be precise about exactly how the number will be determined.

An active entry link will be kept at Bilendi (a market research company) until it receives 464 backlinks of successfully completed experiments, or after 4 days of full-speed collection have passed - whichever comes first. Subjects who are already in the completion pipeline when the entry link is shut down will be allowed to finish timely. The subject pool comprises pre-screened Germany-resident adults.

8) Anything else you would like to pre-register?
(e.g., secondary analyses, variables collected for exploratory purposes, unusual analyses planned?)

We modify the original authors' design to provide incentives. Subjects will be rewarded based on spending decision of one (randomly selected) period of one life, but will not be paid if they did not save enough to meet up the expenses at any retirement period of that life. We do not test for the difference on priming subjects to the objective function (smoothing).

After their main experimental task, subjects will complete one-shot risk- and time-preference elicitation tasks. Results will be used in additional ANOVA models to control for effects from possibly preference heterogeneity across the two treatment groups. We will also use these measures in the additional analysis of the savings outcomes, substituting them for the original paper's risk and time elicited parameters.