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Shortfall allowed: loss aversion and habit formation

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  • Arjen Siegmann

Abstract

In this paper we analyze a model of consumption and investment when preferences are loss averse around a habit level and investment yields an uncertain return. Loss aversion is the most natural way of modeling the presence of a habit as it explicitly models aversion to below-habit consumption. Existing approaches either neglect the possibility of below-habit consumption or model habit formation by dividing consumption through a habit. Confronting the traditional model using ratios with the outcome under loss aversion shows that the loss averse model yields a more natural interpretation thus appears more realistic. Starting with an analytical solution for a piecewise-linear utility function, the results are found to be robust for the more general Kahneman-Tversky formulation of the value function.

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File URL: http://www.dnb.nl/binaries/wo0741_tcm46-146027.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Netherlands Central Bank, Research Department in its series WO Research Memoranda (discontinued) with number 741.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:dnb:wormem:741

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Keywords: habit formation; loss aversion; consumption and investment; uncertainty; behavioral value function;

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  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-91, March.
  4. David Bowman & Deborah Minehart & Matthew Rabin, 1994. "Loss aversion in a consumption/savings model," International Finance Discussion Papers 492, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  5. 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.
  6. Matsen, Egil, 2003. "Habit persistence and welfare gains from international asset trade," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 239-260, April.
  7. Francisco Gomes & Alexander Michaelides, 2003. "Portfolio Choice With Internal Habit Formation: A Life-Cycle Model With Uninsurable Labor Income Risk," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 6(4), pages 729-766, October.
  8. Martin Browning & Annamaria Lusardi, 1996. "Household Saving: Micro Theories and Micro Facts," Discussion Papers 96-01, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  9. Constantinides, George M, 1990. "Habit Formation: A Resolution of the Equity Premium Puzzle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(3), pages 519-43, June.
  10. Martin Browning & Thomas F. Crossley, 2000. "The Life Cycle Model of Consumption and Saving," Social and Economic Dimensions of an Aging Population Research Papers 28, McMaster University.
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  12. John Y. Campbell & John Cochrane, 1999. "Force of Habit: A Consumption-Based Explanation of Aggregate Stock Market Behavior," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(2), pages 205-251, April.
  13. David A. Chapman, 2002. "Does Intrinsic Habit Formation Actually Resolve the Equity Premium Puzzle?," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 5(3), pages 618-645, July.
  14. Detemple, Jerome B & Zapatero, Fernando, 1991. "Asset Prices in an Exchange Economy with Habit Formation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(6), pages 1633-57, November.
  15. Shlomo Benartzi & Richard H. Thaler, 1993. "Myopic Loss Aversion and the Equity Premium Puzzle," NBER Working Papers 4369, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Aylin Seckin, 2000. "Consumption with Habit Formation," CIRANO Working Papers 2000s-39, CIRANO.
  17. Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1992. " Advances in Prospect Theory: Cumulative Representation of Uncertainty," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 5(4), pages 297-323, October.
  18. Aylin Seckin, 2000. "Habit Formation: A Kind of Prudence?," CIRANO Working Papers 2000s-42, CIRANO.
  19. Abel, Andrew B., 1999. "Risk premia and term premia in general equilibrium," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 3-33, February.
  20. Jerome B. Detemple & Fernando Zapatero, 1992. "Optimal Consumption-Portfolio Policies With Habit Formation," Mathematical Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(4), pages 251-274.
  21. Thaler, Richard H, 1994. "Psychology and Savings Policies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(2), pages 186-92, May.
  22. Jeffrey C. Fuhrer, 2000. "Habit Formation in Consumption and Its Implications for Monetary-Policy Models," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(3), pages 367-390, June.
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