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Optimal saving rules for loss-averse agents under uncertainty

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  • Siegmann, Arjen

Abstract

Most empirical studies assume only monotonic preferences for households. Behavioral research however providessubstantial evidence that preferences for wealth are measured relative to a reference point. In this paper weintroduce and solve a two-period consumption and savings model for a loss-averse agent who measures utilityfrom consumption relative to a benchmark level. The solution is given as a parametric decision rule with oneunknown parameter that depends on the distribution of the return on saving. We find non-linearity in the fractionof wealth saved, where the specific saving pattern depends on the sign of the real return on savings. The amount of saving is nondecreasing in initial wealth and the riskiness of the return distribution.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economics Letters.

Volume (Year): 77 (2002)
Issue (Month): 1 (September)
Pages: 27-34

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolet:v:77:y:2002:i:1:p:27-34

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  1. Martin Browning & Annamaria Lusardi, 1996. "Household Saving: Micro Theories and Micro Facts," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(4), pages 1797-1855, December.
  2. Normandin, Michel, 1994. "Precautionary Saving: An Explanation for Excess Sensitivity of Consumption," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 12(2), pages 205-19, April.
  3. Benartzi, Shlomo & Thaler, Richard H, 1995. "Myopic Loss Aversion and the Equity Premium Puzzle," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(1), pages 73-92, February.
  4. 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.).
  5. Michel Normandin, 1997. "Precautionary saving and the Deaton paradox," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 4(3), pages 187-190.
  6. Aizenman, Joshua, 1998. "Buffer stocks and precautionary savings with loss aversion," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(6), pages 931-947, December.
  7. Bowman, David & Minehart, Deborah & Rabin, Matthew, 1999. "Loss aversion in a consumption-savings model," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 155-178, February.
  8. Caballero, Ricardo J., 1990. "Consumption puzzles and precautionary savings," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 113-136, January.
  9. Amos Tversky & Daniel Kahneman, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Levine's Working Paper Archive 7656, David K. Levine.
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Cited by:
  1. Horst Zank, 2010. "On probabilities and loss aversion," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 68(3), pages 243-261, March.

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