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Risk management and wealth accumulation behavior in France

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  • Arrondel, Luc

Abstract

In a prevailing climate of increasing uncertainty (rising risk of unemployment, pension funding problems and unstable family structures), French households have adopted new saving behavior reflected during the nineties, primarily by considerable investment in life insurance products (representing more than 50 percent of financial saving). Recent theoretical saving models have placed greater emphasis on studying prudent behavior in the face of an uncertain future and have shown the influences of multiple risks and borrowing constraints on precautionary savings and portfolio choices. In this vein, a household exposed to a high future income risk or strong liquidity constraints may increase its savings, reduce its investments in risky assets and increase its share of liquid investments. In this paper, wealth accumulation and their relation to these new factors will be specifically studied. Empirical tests on recent French data ("Patrimoine 97") show the relevance of subjective earnings variance to explain wealth accumulation but its contribution is not very large.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economics Letters.

Volume (Year): 74 (2002)
Issue (Month): 2 (January)
Pages: 187-194

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolet:v:74:y:2002:i:2:p:187-194

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References

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  1. Guiso, Luigi & Jappelli, Tullio & Terlizzese, Daniele, 1992. "Earnings Uncertainty and Precautionary Saving," CEPR Discussion Papers 699, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. André Masson & Luc Arrondel, 1996. "Gestion du risque et comportements patrimoniaux," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 296(1), pages 63-89.
  3. Lusardi, Annamaria, 1998. "On the Importance of the Precautionary Saving Motive," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 449-53, May.
  4. Caballero, Ricardo J, 1991. "Earnings Uncertainty and Aggregate Wealth Accumulation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 859-71, September.
  5. Christopher D. Carroll & Andrew A. Samwick, 1993. "How important is precautionary saving?," Working Paper Series / Economic Activity Section 145, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  6. Kimball, Miles S, 1990. "Precautionary Saving in the Small and in the Large," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(1), pages 53-73, January.
  7. Martin Browning & Annamaria Lusardi, 1995. "Household Saving: Micro Theories and Micro Facts," Department of Economics Working Papers 1995-02, McMaster University.
  8. Arrondel, Luc & Laferrere, Anne, 2001. "Taxation and wealth transmission in France," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(1), pages 3-33, January.
  9. Barsky, Robert B, et al, 1997. "Preference Parameters and Behavioral Heterogeneity: An Experimental Approach in the Health and Retirement Study," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(2), pages 537-79, May.
  10. Dreze, Jacques H. & Modigliani, Franco, 1972. "Consumption decisions under uncertainty," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 5(3), pages 308-335, December.
  11. Jonathan S. Skinner, 1987. "Risky Income, Life Cycle Consumption, and Precautionary Savings," NBER Working Papers 2336, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Lusardi, Annamaria, 1997. "Precautionary saving and subjective earnings variance," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 57(3), pages 319-326, December.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Erik Hurst & Arthur Kennickell & Annamaria Lusardi & Francisco Torralba, 2005. "Precautionary Savings and the Importance of Business Owners," NBER Working Papers 11731, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Arrondel, L. & Savignac, F., 2009. "Stockholding: Does housing wealth matter?," Working papers 266, Banque de France.
  3. Essig, Lothar, 2004. "Precautionary saving and old-age provisions: Do subjective saving motives measures work?," Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications 05-22, Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim & Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim.
  4. Johannes Geyer, 2011. "The Effect of Health and Employment Risks on Precautionary Savings," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 408, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
  5. Jin, Ling & Chen, Kevin Z. & Yu, Bingxin & Huang, Zuhui, 2011. "How prudent are rural households in developing transition economies:," IFPRI discussion papers 1127, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  6. Lothar Essig, 2005. "Precautionary saving and old-age provisions: Do subjective saving motive measures work?," MEA discussion paper series 05084, Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy.
  7. Luc Arrondel & Hector Calvo Pardo, 2008. "Les Français sont-ils prudents ? Patrimoine et risque sur les revenus des ménages," PSE Working Papers halshs-00585994, HAL.
  8. Luis Diaz-Serrano, 2005. "Income Volatility and Residential Mortgage Delinquency: Evidence from 12 EU countries," Economics, Finance and Accounting Department Working Paper Series n1530205, Department of Economics, Finance and Accounting, National University of Ireland - Maynooth.
  9. Anderson, Lisa R. & Mellor, Jennifer M., 2008. "Predicting health behaviors with an experimental measure of risk preference," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(5), pages 1260-1274, September.
  10. Jean-Olivier Hairault & François Langot & Thepthida Sopraseuth, 2008. "Quantifying the Laffer Curve on the Continued Activity Tax in a Dynastic Framework," Post-Print halshs-00178465, HAL.
  11. Arrondel, Luc & Masson, André, 2009. "How to Measure Risk and Time Preferences of Savers," Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine 123456789/6826, Paris Dauphine University.
  12. Diaz-Serrano, Luis, 2005. "Income volatility and residential mortgage delinquency across the EU," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 153-177, September.
  13. Luc Arrondel & Hector Calvo Pardo & Xisco Oliver, 2007. "Temperant portfolio choice and background risk: evidence from France," Working Papers halshs-00588069, HAL.
  14. Arthur Kennickell & Annamaria Lusardi, 2004. "Disentangling the Importance of the Precautionary Saving Mode," NBER Working Papers 10888, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Luc Arrondel & Hector Calvo Pardo, 2008. "Les Français sont-ils prudents ? Patrimoine et risque sur les revenus des ménages," Working Papers halshs-00585994, HAL.
  16. Diaz-Serrano, Luis, 2004. "Income Volatility and Residential Mortgage Delinquency: Evidence from 12 EU Countries," IZA Discussion Papers 1396, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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