Optimal irrational behavior in continuous time
Feigenbaum et al. (2009) showed in a two-period overlapping generations model that households can improve upon the rational, competitive equilibrium while maintaining competitive factor markets if agents coordinate upon an irrational consumption/saving rule. We generalize their findings to continuous time. The optimal consumption rule with coordination implies a U-shaped lifecycle consumption profile. Rational agents living in a standard competitive equilibrium would need a 4% increase of consumption in every period across the lifecycle to reach the level of utility that can be achieved under coordination. Most of this gain can be achieved with a linear saving rule.
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2003-017, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
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2009_01, Deakin University, Faculty of Business and Law, School of Accounting, Economics and Finance.
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"Consumption Over the Life Cycle,"
NBER Working Papers
7271, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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NBER Working Papers
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