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On Risk Aversion, Classical Demand Theory, and KM Preferences

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  • Leonard J. Mirman
  • Marc Santugini

Abstract

Building on Kihlstrom and Mirman (1974)’s formulation of risk aversion in the case of multidimensional utility functions, we study the effect of risk aversion on optimal behavior in a general consumer’s maximization problem under uncertainty. We completely characterize the relationship between changes in risk aversion and classical demand theory. We show that the effect of risk aversion on optimal behavior depends on the income and substitution effects. Moreover, the effect of risk aversion is determined not by the riskiness of the risky good, but rather the riskiness of the utility gamble associated with each decision.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CIRPEE in its series Cahiers de recherche with number 1132.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:lvl:lacicr:1132

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Keywords: Classical Demand Theory; Consumer Choice; Income and Substition Effects; Risk Aversion;

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  1. Katz, Eliakim, 1981. "A note on a comparative statics theorem for choice under risk," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 318-319, October.
  2. Bommier, Antoine & Chassagnon, Arnold & Le Grand, François, 2012. "Comparative risk aversion: A formal approach with applications to saving behavior," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 147(4), pages 1614-1641.
  3. Epstein, Larry G & Zin, Stanley E, 1989. "Substitution, Risk Aversion, and the Temporal Behavior of Consumption and Asset Returns: A Theoretical Framework," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(4), pages 937-69, July.
  4. Kreps, David M & Porteus, Evan L, 1978. "Temporal Resolution of Uncertainty and Dynamic Choice Theory," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(1), pages 185-200, January.
  5. Ross, Stephen A, 1981. "Some Stronger Measures of Risk Aversion in the Small and the Large with Applications," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(3), pages 621-38, May.
  6. Kraus, Marvin, 1979. "A comparative statics theorem for choice under risk," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 510-517, December.
  7. Diamond, Peter A. & Stiglitz, Joseph E., 1974. "Increases in risk and in risk aversion," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 337-360, July.
  8. Kihlstrom, Richard E. & Mirman, Leonard J., 1974. "Risk aversion with many commodities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 361-388, July.
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Cited by:
  1. Elena Antoniadou & Leonard J. Mirman & Marc Santugini, 2013. "The Income Effect under Uncertainty: a Slutsky-Like Decomposition with Risk Aversion," Cahiers de recherche 1306, CIRPEE.

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