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Keeping Up With The Joneses, Growth, And Distribution

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  • Chris Tsoukis

Abstract

A recent class of models on ‘keeping up with the Joneses’ suggests that comparison with the consumption of other individuals affects individual utility. This paper nests three variants of the ‘Joneses’ effect into an otherwise standard growth model. Under some conditions, growth and distribution are jointly determined, presenting thus a unification of the relevant theories. These variants are however not equivalent in terms of their effects on growth and distribution. It is also shown that, at least if comparisons‐in‐mean predominate, rises in the mean skills level and in the exogenous skills variance increase both growth and inequality with ambiguous effects on aggregate welfare.

Suggested Citation

  • Chris Tsoukis, 2007. "Keeping Up With The Joneses, Growth, And Distribution," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 54(4), pages 575-600, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:scotjp:v:54:y:2007:i:4:p:575-600
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9485.2007.00430.x
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    File URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9485.2007.00430.x
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Turnovsky, Stephen J. & Monteiro, Goncalo, 2007. "Consumption externalities, production externalities, and efficient capital accumulation under time non-separable preferences," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(2), pages 479-504, February.
    2. Hopkins, Ed & Kornienko, Tatiana, 2006. "Inequality and growth in the presence of competition for status," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 93(2), pages 291-296, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Goerke, Laszlo & Pannenberg, Markus, 2013. "Keeping up with the Joneses: Income Comparisons and Labour Supply," VfS Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 80033, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    2. Vincenzo Lombardo, 2013. "Relative consumption and human capital accumulation," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 33(2), pages 1091-1100.
    3. Manuel A. Gómez, 2010. "The welfare cost of external habits: a quantitative assessment," Estudios de Economia, University of Chile, Department of Economics, vol. 37(1 Year 20), pages 5-26, June.
    4. Christopher Tsoukis & Frédéric Tournemaine, 2013. "Status In A Canonical Macro Model: Labour Supply, Growth And Inequality," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 81(s2), pages 65-92, October.
    5. Christopher Tsoukis & Frederic Tournemaine, 2011. "Social Conflict, Growth And Factor Shares," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 62(2), pages 283-304, May.
    6. Jang-Ting Guo & Juin-Jen Chang, 2008. "Social Status and Optimal Income Taxation," Working Papers 200814, University of California at Riverside, Department of Economics, revised Dec 2008.
    7. Jun-ichi Itaya & Chris Tsoukis, 2017. "Social Capital and the Status Externality," CESifo Working Paper Series 6820, CESifo.
    8. Manuel Gómez, 2010. "A note on external habits and efficiency in the AK model," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 99(1), pages 53-64, February.
    9. Vincenzo Lombardo, 2012. "Relative consumption and poverty traps," Discussion Papers 11_2012, CRISEI, University of Naples "Parthenope", Italy.
    10. Tournemaine, frederic & Tsoukis, Chris, 2008. "Status, endogenous reference standards, and the growth-inequality relation: A note," MPRA Paper 10420, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Tournemaine, Frederic & Tsoukis, Christopher, 2008. "Relative consumption, relative wealth and growth," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 100(2), pages 314-316, August.
    12. Chris Tsoukis & Jun-ichi Itaya, 2019. "Distributive justice and social conflict in an AK model," CESifo Working Paper Series 7601, CESifo.
    13. Laszlo Goerke, 2013. "Relative Consumption and Tax Evasion," CESifo Working Paper Series 4077, CESifo.
    14. Barbara Dluhosch & Daniel Horgos & Klaus Zimmermann, 2014. "Social Choice and Social Unemployment-Income Cleavages: New Insights from Happiness Research," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 15(6), pages 1513-1537, December.
    15. Goerke, Laszlo, 2013. "Relative consumption and tax evasion," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 52-65.
    16. Christopher Tsoukis & George Kapetanios & Joseph Pearlman, 2011. "Elusive Persistence: Wage And Price Rigidities, The New Keynesian Phillips Curve And Inflation Dynamics," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(4), pages 737-768, September.
    17. Paul Levine & Peter McAdam & Peter Welz, 2013. "On Habit and the Socially Efficient Level of Consumption and Work Effort," School of Economics Discussion Papers 0713, School of Economics, University of Surrey.
    18. Frederic Tournemaine, 2008. "Social aspirations and choice of fertility: why can status motive reduce per-capita growth?," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 21(1), pages 49-66, January.
    19. Juin‐Jen Chang & Hsueh‐Fang Tsai & Tsung‐Sheng Tsai, 2019. "Optimal Dynamic Taxation with Distinctive Forms of Social Status Attainment," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 121(2), pages 808-842, April.
    20. Frederic Tournemaine & Christopher Tsoukis, 2015. "Public Expenditures, Growth, and Distribution in a Mixed Regime of Education with a Status Motive," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 17(5), pages 673-701, October.

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