Some Fundamental Problems in Becker, Grossman and Murphy's Implementation of Rational Addiction Theory
AbstractThe econometric implementation of rational addiction theory has been highly influenced by Becker, Grossman and Murphy (BGM). They specify an Euler equation where current consumption is determined by current price and past and future consumption. This model is claimed to be able to discriminate between rational addictive, myopic addictive, and non-addictive behavior. However, as demonstrated in this paper, the coefficients of the Euler equation are not structural parameters. Provided that two implausible assumptions do not hold, the Euler equation coefficients for the rational addict are shown to be non-constant. But even when these assumptions are assumed to be valid, the coefficients of the Euler equation will vary under the alternative hypothesis of myopic addiction. Moreover, and in contrast to the common interpretation, BGM's non-addicted consumer is influenced by past consumption, implying that a rational and a myopic non-addict behave differently. These problems makes it unclear how analyses based on the BGM approach can support, or reject, rational addiction theory.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Research Department of Statistics Norway in its series Discussion Papers with number 375.
Date of creation: Apr 2004
Date of revision:
Rational addiction; Euler equation;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D11 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Theory
- D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
- I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2004-06-02 (All new papers)
- NEP-EVO-2004-06-02 (Evolutionary Economics)
- NEP-HEA-2004-06-02 (Health Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Jonathan Gruber & Botond Koszegi, 2000. "Is Addiction "Rational"? Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 7507, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- O'Donoghue, Ted & Rabin, Matthew, 1997.
"Doing It Now or Later,"
Department of Economics, Working Paper Series
qt7t44m5b0, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
- Ted O'Donoghue & Matthew Rabin, 1996. "Doing It Now or Later," Discussion Papers 1172, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
- Ted O'Donoghue and Matthew Rabin ., 1997. "Doing It Now or Later," Economics Working Papers 97-253, University of California at Berkeley.
- Labeaga, Jose M., 1999. "A double-hurdle rational addiction model with heterogeneity: Estimating the demand for tobacco," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 93(1), pages 49-72, November.
- Laibson, David, 1997.
"Golden Eggs and Hyperbolic Discounting,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
MIT Press, vol. 112(2), pages 443-77, May.
- Pacula, Rosalie Liccardo, 1997. "Women and Substance Use: Are Women Less Susceptible to Addiction?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 454-59, May.
- Orphanides, Athanasios & Zervos, David, 1998. "Myopia and Addictive Behaviour," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(446), pages 75-91, January.
- Pollak, Robert A, 1970. "Habit Formation and Dynamic Demand Functions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 78(4), pages 745-63, Part I Ju.
- Gary S. Becker & Michael Grossman & Kevin M. Murphy, 1990.
"An Empirical Analysis of Cigarette Addiction,"
University of Chicago - George G. Stigler Center for Study of Economy and State
61, Chicago - Center for Study of Economy and State.
- Baltagi, Badi H & Griffin, James M, 2001. "The Econometrics of Rational Addiction: The Case of Cigarettes," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 19(4), pages 449-54, October.
- Miljkovic, Dragan & Nganje, William & de Chastenet, Helene, 2008. "Economic factors affecting the increase in obesity in the United States: Differential response to price," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 48-60, February.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (J Bruusgaard).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.