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Can Habit Formation be Reconciled with Business Cycle Facts?

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Author Info

  • Martin Lettau

    (Federal Reserve Bank of New York and CEPR)

  • Harald Uhlig

    (Tilburg University and CEPR)

Abstract

Many asset pricing puzzles can be explained when habit formation is added to standard preferences. We show that utility functions with a habit then gives rise to a puzzle of consumption volatility in place of the asset pricing puzzles when agents can choose consumption and labor optimally in response to more fundamental shocks. We show that the consumption reaction to technology shocks are too small by an order of magnitude when a utility includes a consumption habit. Moreover, once a habit in leisure is included, labor input is counterfactually smooth over the cycle. In the case of habit in both consumption and leisure, labor input is even countercyclical. Consumption continues to be too smooth. (Copyright: Elsevier)

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File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1006/redy.1998.0035
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics in its journal Review of Economic Dynamics.

Volume (Year): 3 (2000)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 79-99

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Handle: RePEc:red:issued:v:3:y:2000:i:1:p:79-99

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Related research

Keywords: habit formation; real business cycles; consumption;

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  1. Mehra, Rajnish & Prescott, Edward C., 1985. "The equity premium: A puzzle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 145-161, March.
  2. Weil, Philippe, 1989. "The equity premium puzzle and the risk-free rate puzzle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 401-421, November.
  3. Gary Hansen, 2010. "Indivisible Labor and the Business Cycle," Levine's Working Paper Archive 233, David K. Levine.
  4. Lars Peter Hansen & Ravi Jagannathan, 1990. "Implications of Security Market Data for Models of Dynamic Economies," NBER Technical Working Papers 0089, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Hall, Robert E, 1978. "Stochastic Implications of the Life Cycle-Permanent Income Hypothesis: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(6), pages 971-87, December.
  6. Andrew B. Abel, 1990. "Asset Prices under Habit Formation and Catching up with the Joneses," NBER Working Papers 3279, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. John Y. Campbell & John H. Cochrane, 1994. "By Force of Habit: A Consumption-Based Explanation of Aggregate Stock Market Behavior," CRSP working papers 412, Center for Research in Security Prices, Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago.
  8. G. Constantinides, 1990. "Habit formation: a resolution of the equity premium puzzle," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1397, David K. Levine.
  9. John Y. Campbell, 1992. "Inspecting the Mechanism: An Analytical Approach to the Stochastic Growth Model," NBER Working Papers 4188, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. King, Robert G. & Plosser, Charles I. & Rebelo, Sergio T., 1988. "Production, growth and business cycles : I. The basic neoclassical model," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(2-3), pages 195-232.
  11. John H. Cochrane & Lars Peter Hansen, 1992. "Asset Pricing Explorations for Macroeconomics," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1992, Volume 7, pages 115-182 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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