IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Precautionary saving or denied dissaving

  • Feigenbaum, James

Precautionary saving in response to uninsurable income risk can in principle explain the stylized fact that aggregate saving increases with the variance of income, but it is controversial how much of the observed variation in incomes is, in fact, unpredictable. Borrowing constraints offer an alternative explanation that does not require consumers to be uncertain about their future income. This paper employs a three-cohort, overlapping generations model with quadratic utility and no capital to show that, if agents are patient enough, heterogeneity alone can account for more than half the decrease in the equilibrium interest rate caused by a borrowing constraint. The possibility of facing a binding borrowing constraint in the future induces saving, and this saving increases with the cross-sectional variation in income. Another channel that pushes down the interest rate is the direct effect caused by currently constrained agents not being allowed to dissave. For patient agents, the two channels have roughly the same impact on the interest rate.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0264999311000241
Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economic Modelling.

Volume (Year): 28 (2011)
Issue (Month): 4 (July)
Pages: 1559-1572

as
in new window

Handle: RePEc:eee:ecmode:v:28:y:2011:i:4:p:1559-1572
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/30411

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Orazio Attanasio & James Banks & Costas Meghir & Guglielmo Weber, 1995. "Humps and bumps in lifetime consumption," IFS Working Papers W95/14, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  2. James Feigenbaum, 2006. "Precautionary Saving Unfettered," Computing in Economics and Finance 2006 29, Society for Computational Economics.
  3. Makoto Nirei, 2006. "Quantifying Borrowing Constraints and Precautionary Savings," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 9(2), pages 353-363, April.
  4. Christopher D. Carroll, 2000. "Requiem for the Representative Consumer? Aggregate Implications of Microeconomic Consumption Behavior," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(2), pages 110-115, May.
  5. R. Glenn Hubbard & Jonathan Skinner & Stephen P. Zeldes, 1993. "The Importance of Precautionary Motives in Explaining Individual and Aggregate Saving," NBER Working Papers 4516, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Storesletten, Kjetil & Telmer, Christopher I. & Yaron, Amir, 2004. "Consumption and risk sharing over the life cycle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(3), pages 609-633, April.
  7. Carroll, Christopher D. & Samwick, Andrew A., 1997. "The nature of precautionary wealth," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 41-71, September.
  8. Mark Huggett and Edouard Vidon, 2003. "Precautionary Wealth Accumulation: A Positive Third Derivative is not Enough," Working Papers gueconwpa~03-03-11, Georgetown University, Department of Economics.
  9. Feigenbaum, James, 2008. "Information shocks and precautionary saving," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 32(12), pages 3917-3938, December.
  10. Flavio Cunha & James Heckman & Salvador Navarro, 2005. "Separating uncertainty from heterogeneity in life cycle earnings," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 57(2), pages 191-261, April.
  11. Sandmo, Agnar, 1970. "The Effect of Uncertainty on Saving Decisions," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 37(3), pages 353-60, July.
  12. Xu, Xiaonian, 1995. "Precautionary Savings under Liquidity Constraints: A Decomposition," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 36(3), pages 675-90, August.
  13. Huggett, Mark, 1993. "The risk-free rate in heterogeneous-agent incomplete-insurance economies," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 17(5-6), pages 953-969.
  14. S. Rao Aiyagari, 1993. "Uninsured idiosyncratic risk and aggregate saving," Working Papers 502, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  15. Eeckhoudt, Louis & Gollier, Christian & Treich, Nicolas, 2005. "Optimal consumption and the timing of the resolution of uncertainty," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(3), pages 761-773, April.
  16. Cordoba, Juan Carlos, 2010. "US Inequality: Debt Constraints or Incomplete Asset Markets?," Staff General Research Papers 32120, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  17. Chris Carroll & Lawrence H. Summers, 1989. "Consumption Growth Parallels Income Growth: Some New Evidence," NBER Working Papers 3090, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas & Jonathan A. Parker, 2002. "Consumption Over the Life Cycle," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(1), pages 47-89, January.
  19. Angus Deaton, 1989. "Saving and Liquidity Constraints," NBER Working Papers 3196, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Fatih Guvenen, 2005. "Learning Your Earning: Are Labor Income Shocks Really Very Persistent?," Macroeconomics 0507004, EconWPA.
  21. Martin Floden, 2008. "Aggregate Savings When Individual Income Varies," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 11(1), pages 70-82, January.
  22. Huggett, Mark & Ospina, Sandra, 2001. "Aggregate precautionary savings: when is the third derivative irrelevant?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 373-396, October.
  23. Huggett, Mark, 1996. "Wealth distribution in life-cycle economies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(3), pages 469-494, December.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:ecmode:v:28:y:2011:i:4:p:1559-1572. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.