Assorted links

1) Several years back, economists Richard Thaler and Eric Johnson thought a “break-even effect” might exist in the market, where, given past losses, people would look to outcomes that offer a chance to break even fast. Motley Fool thinks it could be why people like penny stocks in a recession.

2) We’ve blogged about how the schedule of food stamps can affect food consumption behavior. It’s not just for food stamps, says the Wall Street Journal. It’s for paychecks.

3) Will lawyers and the Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission look to behavioral economics when they review merger proposals? The New York Times says it is under consideration. Details are thin. (Hat tip: Philip Frankenfeld)

4) A dollar of company stock in a 401(k) plan is worth about half that same dollar in a typical mutual fund. Diversify. Please.

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