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Changes in Consumption Behaviour: Italy in the Early 1990s

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Author Info

  • Charles Grant

    (University College London, FCC and European University Institute)

  • Raffaele Miniaci

    ()
    (University of Padua)

  • Guglielmo Weber

    ()
    (University of Padua, IFS and CEPR)

Abstract

This paper investigates the causes of the Italian consumption decline of the early 1990’s by estimating deviations from normal consumption for 1985-94. The paper uses household data from the Survey of Family Budgets (SFB) from ISTAT, a particularly rich but relatively unexplored source containing detailed demographic and expenditure information for over 30,000 Italian households each year. The paper finds that the decline in consumption was larger for the working age households and that it was larger in the south, among the self-employed, and among public sector employees. The decline can be dated from the third quarter of 1992. A simple simulation shows how these results can be reconciled with the life-cycle model of consumption in which there is a permanent and unexpected shock to lifetime income induced by the pension and other reforms introduced by the Amato government.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by GDE (Giornale degli Economisti e Annali di Economia), Bocconi University in its journal Giornale degli Economisti e Annali di Economia.

Volume (Year): 61 (2002)
Issue (Month): 1 (June)
Pages: 61-101

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Handle: RePEc:gde:journl:gde_v61_n1_p61-101

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Related research

Keywords: consumption; micro data; business cycle;

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References

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  1. Jappelli, Tullio, 1995. "Does social security reduce the accumulation of private wealth? Evidence from Italian survey data," Ricerche Economiche, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 1-31, March.
  2. Raffaele Miniaci & Guglielmo Weber, 1996. "The Italian recession of 1993: Aggregate implications of microeconomic evidence," IFS Working Papers W96/09, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  3. Orazio P. Attanasio & James Banks & Costas Meghir & Guglielmo Weber, 1995. "Humps and Bumps in Lifetime Consumption," NBER Working Papers 5350, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Erich Battistin & Raffaele Miniaci & Guglielmo Weber, 2003. "What do we learn from recall consumption data?," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 466, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  5. Bentolila, Samuel & Bertola, Giuseppe, 1990. "Firing Costs and Labour Demand: How Bad Is Eurosclerosis?," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(3), pages 381-402, July.
  6. Attanasio, Orazio P & Weber, Guglielmo, 1994. "The UK Consumption Boom of the Late 1980s: Aggregate Implications of Microeconomic Evidence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(427), pages 1269-1302, November.
  7. Orazio P. Attanasio & Hilary Williamson Hoynes, 2000. "Differential Mortality and Wealth Accumulation," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 35(1), pages 1-29.
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