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Time-inconsistent Preferences in a General Equilibrium Model

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  • Herings,Jean-Jacques
  • Rohde,Kirsten I.M.

    (METEOR)

Abstract

This paper introduces time-inconsistent preferences in a multi-commodity general equilibrium framework with incomplete markets. The standard concept of competitive equilibrium is extended in order to allow for changes in intertemporal preferences. Depending on whether or not agents recognize that their intertemporal preferences change, agents are called sophisticated or naïve. This paper presents competitive equilibrium notions for economies with naïve agents and economies with sophisticated agents and provides assumptions under which both types of equilibria exist. Surprisingly, the set of naïve equilibria of societies populated by time-consistent households is not allocationally equivalent to the set of competitive equilibria. For sophisticated equilibria, the equivalence holds. Time-inconsistency also raises conceptual issues about the appropriate concept of efficiency. Choices have to be made concerning the incorporation of future preferences and the appropriate instruments to create Pareto improvements. For both naïve and sophisticated societies, we present four possible efficiency concepts. Suitable conditions are specified for which both naïve and sophisticated equilibria satisfy appropriate efficiency concepts.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Maastricht University, Maastricht Research School of Economics of Technology and Organization (METEOR) in its series Research Memorandum with number 016.

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Date of creation: 2004
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Handle: RePEc:unm:umamet:2004016

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Keywords: microeconomics ;

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References

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  1. Jayasri Dutta & Stephen Morris, . "The Revelation of Information and Self-Fulfilling Beliefs," Penn CARESS Working Papers 269cceedcbd401a5e46548b88, Penn Economics Department.
  2. Hoch, Stephen J & Loewenstein, George F, 1991. " Time-Inconsistent Preferences and Consumer Self-Control," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 17(4), pages 492-507, March.
  3. Laibson, David I., 1997. "Golden Eggs and Hyperbolic Discounting," Scholarly Articles 4481499, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  4. Atsushi Kajii & Antonio Villanacci & Alessandro Citanna, 1998. "Constrained suboptimality in incomplete markets: a general approach and two applications," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 11(3), pages 495-521.
  5. Erzo G. J. Luttmer & Thomas Mariotti, 2003. "Subjective Discounting in an Exchange Economy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(5), pages 959-989, October.
  6. Loewenstein, George & Prelec, Drazen, 1992. "Anomalies in Intertemporal Choice: Evidence and an Interpretation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(2), pages 573-97, May.
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Cited by:
  1. HERINGS, P. Jean-Jacques & ROHDE, Kirsten I.M., . "On the completeness of complete markets," CORE Discussion Papers RP -2153, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  2. Laibson, David, 1997. "Golden Eggs and Hyperbolic Discounting," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(2), pages 443-77, May.
  3. Arno Riedl, 2009. "Behavioral and Experimental Economics Can Inform Public Policy: Some Thoughts," CESifo Working Paper Series 2902, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. Rohde,Kirsten I.M., 2005. "A Reason for Sophisticated Investors not to seize Arbitrage Opportunities in Markets without Frictions," Research Memorandum 053, Maastricht University, Maastricht Research School of Economics of Technology and Organization (METEOR).
  5. Gerber, Anke & Rohde, Kirsten I.M., 2010. "Risk and preference reversals in intertemporal choice," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 654-668, December.
  6. Gabrieli, Tommaso & Ghosal, Sayantan, 2009. "Non-Existence of Competitive Equilibria with Dynamically Inconsistent Preferences," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 900, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.

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