Eliciting Individual-Specific Discount Rates
AbstractLongstanding debate over the appropriate social discount rate for public projects stems from our lack of knowledge about how individual discount rates vary across people and across choice contexts. Using a sample of roughly 15,000 choices by over 2000 individuals, we estimate utility theoretic models concerning private tradeoffs involving money over time that reveal individual specific discount rates. We control for experimentally differentiated choice scenarios, sociodemographic heterogeneity, and elicitation formats, and complex forms of heteroscedasticity. Statistically significant heterogeneity in discount rates is quantified for both an exponential discounting model and a competing hyperbolic model, but neither specification clearly dominates.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University of Oregon Economics Department in its series University of Oregon Economics Department Working Papers with number 2003-10.
Date of creation: 01 Jan 2003
Date of revision: 01 Jan 2003
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Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D91 - Microeconomics - - Intertemporal Choice - - - Intertemporal Household Choice; Life Cycle Models and Saving
- H4 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods
- C25 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions
- C35 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions
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