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Optimal Consumption under Uncertainty: An Experimental Investigation

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  • Hey, John D
  • Dardanoni, Valentino

Abstract

This article describes a large-scale experimental investigation (using 128 subjects) into opt imal dynamic consumption behavior under income uncertainty. Payment w as linked to performance; nevertheless behavior departed significantl y from optimal behavior. The main focus of the research was on the co mparative static implications of actual behavior: to this end the aut hors used sixteen different parameter sets and found, after correctin g for differences in attitude toward risk, that the comparative stati c predictions of optimality theory were confirmed by the evidence. Th us behavior may agree with optimal behavior in a comparative, rather than absolute, sense. Copyright 1987 by Royal Economic Society.

Suggested Citation

  • Hey, John D & Dardanoni, Valentino, 1987. "Optimal Consumption under Uncertainty: An Experimental Investigation," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 98(390), pages 105-116, Supplemen.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:98:y:1987:i:390:p:105-16
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    Cited by:

    1. Enrica Carbone, 2006. "Understanding intertemporal choices," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(8), pages 889-898.
    2. Ferruccio Ponzano & Roberto Ricciuti, 2012. "An Experimental AK Model of Growth," CESifo Working Paper Series 3744, CESifo Group Munich.
    3. repec:zbw:rwirep:0387 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Harald Uhlig & Martin Lettau, 1999. "Rules of Thumb versus Dynamic Programming," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(1), pages 148-174, March.
    5. Vital Anderhub & Werner Güth & Uri Gneezy & Doron Sonsino, 2001. "On the Interaction of Risk and Time Preferences: An Experimental Study," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 2(3), pages 239-253, August.
    6. Vivian Lei & Charles N. Noussair, 2002. "An Experimental Test of an Optimal Growth Model," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(3), pages 549-570, June.
    7. Rodepeter, Ralf & Winter, Joachim, 1999. "Rules of thumb in life-cycle savings models," Papers 99-81, Sonderforschungsbreich 504.
    8. T. Ballinger & Eric Hudson & Leonie Karkoviata & Nathaniel Wilcox, 2011. "Saving behavior and cognitive abilities," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 14(3), pages 349-374, September.
    9. Enrique Fatás & Juan A. Lacomba & Francisco M. Lagos & Ana I. Moro, 2008. "Experimental tests on consumption, savings and pensions," ThE Papers 08/14, Department of Economic Theory and Economic History of the University of Granada..
    10. Luhan, Wolfgang J. & Scharler, Johann, 2013. "Monetary Policy, Inflation Illusion and the Taylor Principle – An Experimental Study," Ruhr Economic Papers 402, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    11. Muller, Wieland, 2001. "Strategies, heuristics, and the relevance of risk-aversion in a dynamic decision problem," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 493-522, August.
    12. repec:pit:wpaper:334 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Brosig-Koch, Jeannette & Keldenich, Klemens, 2012. "The More You Know? – Consumption Behavior and the Communication of Economic Information," Ruhr Economic Papers 387, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    14. Ballinger, T.P. & Palumbo, M.G. & Wilcox, N.T., 1998. "Precautionary Saving in the Laboratory," Papers 98-04, Houston - Department of Economics.
    15. repec:pit:wpaper:513 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Jeannette Brosig-Koch & Klemens Keldenich, 2012. "The More You Know? – Consumption Behavior and the Communication of Economic Information," Ruhr Economic Papers 0387, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
    17. T. Parker Ballinger & Michael G. Palumbo & Nathaniel T. Wilcox, 2003. "Precautionary saving and social learning across generations: an experiment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(490), pages 920-947, October.

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