Discount Rates for Time Versus Dates: The Sensitivity of Discounting to Time-Interval Description

LeBoeuf, Robyn A.
February 2006
Journal of Marketing Research (JMR);Feb2006, Vol. 43 Issue 1, p59
Academic Journal
Six experiments examine the impact of time-interval descriptions on consumers' discount rates. Consumers exhibit more discounting (e.g., they demand more money to delay income) when delay intervals are described by extents of time than when delay intervals are described by dates. This pattern holds in various contexts, including gains and losses, and is robust to response-mode changes. Findings further indicate that this effect may arise because, compared with date descriptions, extent descriptions enhance perceptions of interval length. The author discusses other potential mechanisms and implications.


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