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The Timing of Intergenerational Transfers, Tax Policy, and Aggregate Savings

  • Altig, David
  • Davis, Steven J

The authors analyze an overlapping-generations framework that accommodates two observations: (1) the interest rate on consumption loans exceeds the rate of return to savings and (2) private intergenerational transfers primarily occur early in the life cycle. Assuming altruistically motivated transfers in at least some family lines and other plausible conditions, the authors prove the invariance of capital's steady-state marginal product to government debt, government expenditures, and the tax rates on labor and capital income. The authors show that the tax treatment of household interest payments has powerful effects on capital intensity and aggregate savings in life-cycle and, especially, altruistic linkage models. Copyright 1992 by American Economic Association.

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Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 82 (1992)
Issue (Month): 5 (December)
Pages: 1199-220

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Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:82:y:1992:i:5:p:1199-220
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  1. Altig, David & Davis, Steven J., 1993. "Borrowing constraints and two-sided altruism with an application to social security," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 467-494, May.
  2. Glenn B. Canner & Charles A. Luckett, 1989. "Home equity lending," Federal Reserve Bulletin, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.), issue May, pages 333-344.
  3. Laurence J. Kotlikoff, 1987. "Intergenerational Transfers and Savings," NBER Working Papers 2237, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Barro, Robert J., 1974. "Are Government Bonds Net Wealth?," Scholarly Articles 3451399, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  5. Altonji, Joseph G & Hayashi, Fumio & Kotlikoff, Laurence J, 1992. "Is the Extended Family Altruistically Linked? Direct Tests Using Micro Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(5), pages 1177-98, December.
  6. Bernheim, B Douglas & Bagwell, Kyle, 1988. "Is Everything Neutral?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(2), pages 308-38, April.
  7. Modigliani, Franco, 1988. "The Role of Intergenerational Transfers and Life Cycle Saving in the Accumulation of Wealth," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 2(2), pages 15-40, Spring.
  8. Lawrence H. Summers, 1982. "Tax Policy, the Rate of Return, and Savings," NBER Working Papers 0995, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Gary S. Becker, 1974. "A Theory of Social Interactions," NBER Working Papers 0042, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Laurence J. Kotlikoff & Lawrence H. Summers, 1980. "The Role of Intergenerational Transfers in Aggregate Capital Accumulation," NBER Working Papers 0445, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Andrew B. Abel & Laurence J. Kotlikoff, 1988. "Does the Consumption of Different Age Groups Move Together? A New Nonparametric Test of Intergenerational Altruism," NBER Working Papers 2490, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Boskin, Michael J. & Kotlikoff, Laurence J., 1985. "Public debt and United States saving: A new test of the neutrality hypothesis," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 55-86, January.
  13. Altig, David & Davis, Steve J., 1989. "Government debt, redistributive fiscal policies, and the interaction between borrowing constraints and intergenerational altrusim," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 3-29, July.
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