Exchangeability and the law of maturity


The law of maturity is the belief that less-observed events are becoming mature and, therefore, more likely to occur in the future. Previous studies have shown that the assumption of infinite exchangeability contradicts the law of maturity. In particular, it has been shown that infinite exchangeability contradicts probabilistic descriptions of the law of maturity such as the gambler’s belief and the belief in maturity. We show that the weaker assumption of finite exchangeability is compatible with both the gambler’s belief and belief in maturity. We provide sufficient conditions under which these beliefs hold under finite exchangeability. These conditions are illustrated with commonly used parametric models.

In Theory and Decision
Rafael B. Stern
Rafael B. Stern
Professor of Statistics

I am an Assistant Professor at the Federal University of São Carlos. I have a B.A. in Statistics from University of São Paulo, a B.A. in Law from Pontifícia Universidade Católica in São Paulo, and a Ph.D. in Statistics from Carnegie Mellon University. I am currently a member of the Scientific Council of the Brazilian Association of Jurimetrics, an associate investigator at NeuroMat and a member of the Order of Attorneys of Brazil.