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Going with your gut: the (in)accuracy of forecast revisions in a football score prediction game

Singleton, C., Reade, J. J. and Brown, A. (2020) Going with your gut: the (in)accuracy of forecast revisions in a football score prediction game. Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics, 89. 101502. ISSN 2214-8043

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1016/j.socec.2019.101502


This paper studies 150 individuals who each chose to forecast the outcome of 380 fixed events, namely all football matches during the 2017/18 season of the English Premier League. The focus is on whether revisions to these forecasts before the matches began improved the likelihood of predicting correct scorelines and results. Against what theory might expect, we show how these revisions tended towards significantly worse forecasting performance, suggesting that individuals should have stuck with their initial judgements, or their 'gut instincts'. This result is robust to both differences in the average forecasting ability of individuals and the predictability of matches. We find evidence this is because revisions to the forecast number of goals scored in football matches are generally excessive, especially when these forecasts were increased rather than decreased.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Politics, Economics and International Relations > Economics
ID Code:87831
Uncontrolled Keywords:Judgement revision; Prediction making; Sports forecasting
Additional Information:This paper is based on data obtained from and analysed with the permission of Superbru, Sport Engage Ltd. Throughout the study, the anonymity of individual users of the Superbru prediction game was maintained. The use of these data does not imply the endorsement of the data owners in relation to the interpretation or analysis of the data.

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