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Abstract

Although the field of psychology is undergoing an immense shift toward the use of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), the application of this methodology to consumer research is relatively new. To assist consumer researchers in understanding fMRI, this paper elaborates on the findings of prior fMRI research related to consumer behavior and highlights the features that make fMRI an attractive method for consumer and marketing research. The authors discuss advantages and limitations and illustrate the proposed procedures with an applied study, which investigates loss aversion when buying and selling a common product. Results reveal a significantly stronger activation in the amygdala while consumers estimate selling prices versus buying prices, suggesting that loss aversion is associated with the processing of negative emotion. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.