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Self-Confirming Equilibrium and the Lucas Critique

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  • Fudenberg, Drew
  • Levine, David K.

Abstract

We examine the role of off-path “superstitions†in macro-economics, and show how a false belief about off-path play is the key element underlying both the Lucas Critique and the game-theoretic concept of self-confirming equilibrium. However, the impact of false beliefs in these two cases is different: In the Lucas case, a policy maker’s incorrect beliefs about off-path play can lead to the adoption of mistaken policy innovation. However, the consequences of such an innovation provide evidence that the belief that motivated them was wrong. In contrast, play may never escape an undesirable self-confirming equilibrium, as the action implied by the mistaken belief does not generate data that contradicts it; escape from the self-confirming equilibrium requires that players do a sufficient amount of experimentation with off-path actions.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Harvard University Department of Economics in its series Scholarly Articles with number 4729511.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Publication status: Published in Journal of Economic Theory
Handle: RePEc:hrv:faseco:4729511

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  1. Hahn, Frank H, 1977. " Exercises in Conjectural Equilibria," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 79(2), pages 210-26.
  2. Drew Fudenberg & David K. Levine, 1993. "Steady State Learning and Nash Equilibrium," Levine's Working Paper Archive 373, David K. Levine.
  3. Alberto Alesina & George-Marios Angeletos, 2004. "Fairness and Redistribution," NajEcon Working Paper Reviews 122247000000000306, www.najecon.org.
  4. Drew Fudenberg & David K Levine, 2005. "Superstition and Rational Learning," Levine's Working Paper Archive 618897000000000731, David K. Levine.
  5. Eddie Dekel & Drew Fudenberg & David K. Levine, 1999. "Payoff Information and Self-Confirming Equilibrium," Levine's Working Paper Archive 172, David K. Levine.
  6. William Poole, 2002. "Flation," Speech 49, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  7. Benassy Jean-pascal, 1974. "Neokeynesian disequilibrium theory in a monetary economy," CEPREMAP Working Papers (Couverture Orange) 7402, CEPREMAP.
  8. Kalai, E & Neme, A, 1992. "The Strength of a Little Perfection," International Journal of Game Theory, Springer, vol. 20(4), pages 335-55.
  9. Fudenberg, Drew & Levine, David K, 1997. "Measuring Players' Losses in Experimental Games," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(2), pages 507-36, May.
  10. Lucas, Robert Jr, 1976. "Econometric policy evaluation: A critique," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 19-46, January.
  11. Borgers Tilman, 1994. "Weak Dominance and Approximate Common Knowledge," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 265-276, October.
  12. Fudenberg, Drew & Levine, David K, 1993. "Self-Confirming Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(3), pages 523-45, May.
  13. Monderer, Dov & Samet, Dov, 1989. "Approximating common knowledge with common beliefs," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 1(2), pages 170-190, June.
  14. Fudenberg, Drew & Kreps, David M., 1995. "Learning in extensive-form games I. Self-confirming equilibria," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 20-55.
  15. In-Koo Cho & Noah Williams & Thomas J. Sargent, 2002. "Escaping Nash Inflation," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(1), pages 1-40.
  16. Kalai, Ehud & Lehrer, Ehud, 1993. "Rational Learning Leads to Nash Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(5), pages 1019-45, September.
  17. Thomas Sargent & Noah Williams & Tao Zha, 2006. "Shocks and Government Beliefs: The Rise and Fall of American Inflation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(4), pages 1193-1224, September.
  18. Levine, David & Kreps, David & Fudenberg, Drew, 1988. "On the Robustness of Equilibrium Refinements," Scholarly Articles 3350444, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  19. G. Noldeke & L. Samuelson, 2010. "An Evolutionary Analysis of Backward and Forward Induction," Levine's Working Paper Archive 538, David K. Levine.
  20. E. Dekel & D. Fudenberg, 2010. "Rational Behavior with Payoff Uncertainty," Levine's Working Paper Archive 379, David K. Levine.
  21. Dekel, Eddie & Fudenberg, Drew & Levine, David, 2004. "Learning to Play Bayesian Games," Scholarly Articles 3200612, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  22. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  23. Drew Fudenberg & David K. Levine, 1996. "Measuring Subject’s Losses in Experimental Games," Levine's Working Paper Archive 370, David K. Levine.
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Cited by:
  1. Ellison, Martin & Scott, Andrew, 2009. "Learning and Price Volatility in Duopoly Models of Resource Depletion," CEPR Discussion Papers 7378, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Ohanian, Lee E. & Prescott, Edward C. & Stokey, Nancy L., 2009. "Introduction to dynamic general equilibrium," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(6), pages 2235-2246, November.
  3. David Levine, 2011. "Neuroeconomics?," International Review of Economics, Springer, vol. 58(3), pages 287-305, September.

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