Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Household Intertemporal Behaviour: A Collective Characterization and a Test of Commitment

Contents:

Author Info

  • Maurizio Mazzocco

Abstract

In this paper, a formal test of intra-household commitment is derived and performed. To that end, two models of household intertemporal behaviour are developed. In both models, household members are characterized by individual preferences. In the first formulation, household decisions are always on the ex ante Pareto frontier. In the second model, the assumption of intra-household commitment required by ex ante efficiency is relaxed. It is shown that the full-efficiency household Euler equations are nested in the no-commitment Euler equations. Using this result, the hypothesis that household members can commit to future allocations of resources is tested using the Consumer Expenditure Survey. I strongly reject this hypothesis. It is also shown that the standard unitary framework is a special case of the full-efficiency model. However, if household members are not able to commit, household intertemporal behaviour cannot be characterized using the standard life-cycle model. These findings have two main implications. First, policy makers can change household behaviour by modifying the decision power of individual household members. Second, to evaluate programmes designed to improve the welfare of household members, it would be beneficial to replace the standard unitary model with a characterization of household behaviour that allows for lack of commitment. Copyright 2007, Wiley-Blackwell.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/j.1467-937X.2007.00447.x
Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Oxford University Press in its journal The Review of Economic Studies.

Volume (Year): 74 (2007)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 857-895

as in new window
Handle: RePEc:oup:restud:v:74:y:2007:i:3:p:857-895

Contact details of provider:

Related research

Keywords:

References

No references listed on IDEAS
You can help add them by filling out this form.

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
This item has more than 25 citations. To prevent cluttering this page, these citations are listed on a separate page.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:oup:restud:v:74:y:2007:i:3:p:857-895. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Oxford University Press) or (Christopher F. Baum).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.