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Households' Consumption under the Habit Formation Hypothesis. Evidence from Italian Households using the Survey of Household Income and Wealth (SHIW)

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  • Mariacristina Rossi

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Abstract

This paper explores the mis-specification of preferences as a cause of the poor empirical performance of the traditional Life Cycle/Permanent Income model in explaining Italian households' consumption decisions. Consumption profiles generated under strict life cycle models could be hardly reconciled with those exhibited by Italian households. We estimate how household consumption evolves over time by using an Euler equation approach, enriched both for the presence of habit formation in households' preferences and uncertainty. We test its performance by using a GMM estimation strategy. Our results prove that ignoring habit persistence can lead to misleading results in interpreting the determinants of consumption.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Essex, Department of Economics in its series Economics Discussion Papers with number 595.

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Date of creation: 04 May 2005
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Handle: RePEc:esx:essedp:595

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  1. Christopher D. Carroll & Andrew A. Samwick, 1998. "How Important Is Precautionary Saving?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(3), pages 410-419, August.
  2. repec:fth:coluec:544 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Milton Friedman, 1957. "Introduction to "A Theory of the Consumption Function"," NBER Chapters, in: A Theory of the Consumption Function, pages 1-6 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. John Y. Campbell & John H. Cochrane, 1995. "By Force of Habit: A Consumption-Based Explanation of Aggregate Stock Market Behavior," NBER Working Papers 4995, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Alessandra Guariglia, 2002. "Consumption, habit formation, and precautionary saving: evidence from the British Household Panel Survey," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 54(1), pages 1-19, January.
  6. Attanasio, Orazio P & Weber, Guglielmo, 1989. "Intertemporal Substitution, Risk Aversion and the Euler Equation for Consumption," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 99(395), pages 59-73, Supplemen.
  7. Carroll, Christopher D. & Samwick, Andrew A., 1997. "The nature of precautionary wealth," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 41-71, September.
  8. G. Constantinides, 1990. "Habit formation: a resolution of the equity premium puzzle," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1397, David K. Levine.
  9. Giucca, P. & Jappelli, T. & Terlizzese, D., 1992. "Earning Uncertainty and Precautionary Saving," Papers 161, Banca Italia - Servizio di Studi.
  10. Raquel Carrasco & José M. Labeaga & J. David López-Salido, 2005. "Consumption and Habits: Evidence from Panel Data," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(500), pages 144-165, 01.
  11. Alessandra Guariglia & Mariachristina Rossi, 1999. "Consumption, habit formation and precautionary saving: Evidence from the UK," Economics Discussion Papers 502, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
  12. Guiso, Luigi & Jappelli, Tullio & Terlizzese, Daniele, 1991. "Why is Italy's Savings Rate So High?," CEPR Discussion Papers 572, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. Meghir, Costas & Weber, Guglielmo, 1996. "Intertemporal Nonseparability or Borrowing Restrictions? A Disaggregate Analysis Using a U.S. Consumption Panel," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(5), pages 1151-81, September.
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Cited by:
  1. Enrica Carbone & Gerardo Infante, 2012. "Are Groups Better Planners Than Individuals? An Experimental Analysis," Labsi Experimental Economics Laboratory University of Siena 042, University of Siena.

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