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A Note On Economic Growth With Subsistence Consumption

  • Strulik, Holger

It is well known that the performance of simple models of economic growth improves substantially through the introduction of subsistence consumption. How to compute subsistence needs, however, is a difficult and controversially discussed issue. Here, I reconsider the linear (Ak) growth model with subsistence consumption and show that the evolution of savings rates and economic growth rates over time is independent from the size of subsistence needs. The model is thus more general and less subject to arbitrariness than it might have been thought initially. Quantitatively, it is shown that, although there is no degree of freedom to manipulate transitional dynamics, the model approximates the historical evolution of savings rates and growth rates reasonably well.

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Article provided by Cambridge University Press in its journal Macroeconomic Dynamics.

Volume (Year): 14 (2010)
Issue (Month): 05 (November)
Pages: 763-771

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Handle: RePEc:cup:macdyn:v:14:y:2010:i:05:p:763-771_99
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  1. Galor, Oded, 2005. "From Stagnation to Growth: Unified Growth Theory," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 4, pages 171-293 Elsevier.
  2. Karen E. Dynan & Jonathan Skinner & Stephen P. Zeldes, 2000. "Do the Rich Save More?," NBER Working Papers 7906, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Norman Loayza & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel & Luis Servén, 1999. "What Drives Private Saving Across the World?," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 47, Central Bank of Chile.
  4. Becker, Gary S & Mulligan, Casey B, 1997. "The Endogenous Determination of Time Preference," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(3), pages 729-58, August.
  5. Sharif, Mohammed, 1986. "The Concept and measurement of subsistence: A survey of the literature," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 14(5), pages 555-577, May.
  6. Kraay, Aart & Raddatz, Claudio, 2007. "Poverty traps, aid, and growth," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 315-347, March.
  7. Steger, Thomas M., 2000. "Economic growth with subsistence consumption," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 343-361, August.
  8. Jody Overland & Christopher D. Carroll & David N. Weil, 2000. "Saving and Growth with Habit Formation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(3), pages 341-355, June.
  9. Dalgaard, Carl-Johan & Strulik, Holger, 2007. "A Bioeconomic Foundation of the Malthusian Equilibrium: Body Size and Population Size in the Long-Run," Hannover Economic Papers (HEP) dp-373, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.
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