Life-cycle consumption: can single agent models get it right?
AbstractIn the quantitative macroeconomics literature, single agent models are widely used to explain ``per-adult equivalent'' data, which are obtained at the household level. In this paper we suggest a simple framework to understand the sources of bias when these models are used to make predictions for aggregate consumption. In both a theoretical and a quantitative exercise, we find that economies of scale in consumption inside the household are positively related to the bias introduced by the single agent approach in predicted consumption profiles over the life-cycle. We also do an external validation exercise, which suggests that economies of scale inside the household are rather large, pointing out the need to approach life-cycle consumption with models that consider households rather than single agents.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 30910.
Date of creation: Feb 2011
Date of revision:
Consumption; Life-Cycle Models; Households;
Other versions of this item:
- Bick, Alexander & Choi, Sekyu, 2011. "Life-Cycle Consumption: Can Single Agent Models Get it Right?," MPRA Paper 29017, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- J10 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - General
- D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
- D91 - Microeconomics - - Intertemporal Choice - - - Intertemporal Household Choice; Life Cycle Models and Saving
- E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
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