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Altruism and Self-Restraint

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  • David DE LA CROIX
  • Philippe MICHEL

Abstract

Parental altruism plays a particular role when standard-of-living aspirations are transmitted from one generation to the next. The influence of altruistic parents is not limited to the bequest they could leave; they also direct the evolution of children's aspirations by restraining their own consumption standard. We show that, even if there is no bequest, altruism always increases capital accumulation and has a stabilizing effect on the economy. However, its effect on steady state welfare can be negative. Inherited standard-of-living can also generate regime shifts (bequest/no bequest) along the equilibrium path.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by ENSAE in its journal Annals of Economics and Statistics.

Volume (Year): (2001)
Issue (Month): 63-64 ()
Pages: 233-259

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Handle: RePEc:adr:anecst:y:2001:i:63-64:p:12

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  1. Gary S. Becker, 1974. "A Theory of Social Interactions," NBER Working Papers 0042, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Easterlin, Richard A, 1971. "Does Human Fertility Adjust to the Environment?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 61(2), pages 399-407, May.
  3. Weil, Philippe, 1987. "Love thy children : Reflections on the Barro debt neutrality theorem," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 377-391, May.
  4. JOUVET, Pierre-André & MICHEL, Philippe & VIDAL, Jean-Pierre, 1997. "Intergenerational altruism and the environment," CORE Discussion Papers 1997041, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  5. Ryder, Harl E, Jr & Heal, Geoffrey M, 1973. "Optimum Growth with Intertemporally Dependent Preferences," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(1), pages 1-33, January.
  6. Andrew B. Abel, . "Operative Gift and Bequest Motives," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 9-87, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
  7. Alex Michalos, 1980. "Satisfaction and happiness," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 8(4), pages 385-422, December.
  8. Becker, G.S., 1991. "Habits, Addictions, and Traditions," University of Chicago - Economics Research Center 91-8, Chicago - Economics Research Center.
  9. Barro, Robert J., 1974. "Are Government Bonds Net Wealth?," Scholarly Articles 3451399, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  10. Boucekkine, Raouf, 1995. "An alternative methodology for solving nonlinear forward-looking models," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 711-734, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Rapoport, Hillel & Vidal, Jean-Pierre, 2007. "Economic growth and endogenous intergenerational altruism," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(7-8), pages 1231-1246, August.
  2. Jordi Caballé & Ana Moro-Egido, 2008. "The Effect of Aspirations, Habits, and Social Security on the Distribution of Wealth," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 761.08, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  3. Jaime Alonso-Carrera & Jordi Caballe & Xavier Raurich, 2004. "Aspirations, Habit Formation, and Bequest Motive," Working Papers 136, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  4. Cardia, Emanuela & Michel, Philippe, 2004. "Altruism, intergenerational transfers of time and bequests," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 28(8), pages 1681-1701, June.
  5. Luca Correani, 2004. "Preferences,Development And The Corruption Trap," Public Economics 0406007, EconWPA.
  6. de la Croix, David, 2001. "Growth dynamics and education spending: The role of inherited tastes and abilities," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(8), pages 1415-1438, August.
  7. Alonso-Carrera, Jaime & Caballé, Jordi & Raurich, Xavier, 2008. "Estate taxes, consumption externalities, and altruism," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(7), pages 1751-1764, July.
  8. Olivia C. Estrella L?ez, 2003. "Social Capital and Government in the Production of Public Goods," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 580.03, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
  9. Gori, Luca & Sodini, Mauro, 2012. "Indeterminacy and nonlinear dynamics in an OLG growth model with endogenous labour supply and inherited tastes," MPRA Paper 35942, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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