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Optimal saving rules for loss-averse agents under uncertainty

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  • Siegmann, Arjen

Abstract

Most empirical studies assume only monotonic preferences for households. Behavioral research however providessubstantial evidence that preferences for wealth are measured relative to a reference point. In this paper weintroduce and solve a two-period consumption and savings model for a loss-averse agent who measures utilityfrom consumption relative to a benchmark level. The solution is given as a parametric decision rule with oneunknown parameter that depends on the distribution of the return on saving. We find non-linearity in the fractionof wealth saved, where the specific saving pattern depends on the sign of the real return on savings. The amount of saving is nondecreasing in initial wealth and the riskiness of the return distribution.
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Suggested Citation

  • Siegmann, Arjen, 2002. "Optimal saving rules for loss-averse agents under uncertainty," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 27-34, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolet:v:77:y:2002:i:1:p:27-34
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Martin Browning & Annamaria Lusardi, 1996. "Household Saving: Micro Theories and Micro Facts," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(4), pages 1797-1855, December.
    2. Caballero, Ricardo J., 1990. "Consumption puzzles and precautionary savings," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 113-136, January.
    3. Bowman, David & Minehart, Deborah & Rabin, Matthew, 1999. "Loss aversion in a consumption-savings model," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 155-178, February.
    4. Christopher D. Carroll & Andrew A. Samwick, 1998. "How Important Is Precautionary Saving?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(3), pages 410-419, August.
    5. Aizenman, Joshua, 1998. "Buffer stocks and precautionary savings with loss aversion," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(6), pages 931-947, December.
    6. Normandin, Michel, 1994. "Precautionary Saving: An Explanation for Excess Sensitivity of Consumption," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 12(2), pages 205-219, April.
    7. Shlomo Benartzi & Richard H. Thaler, 1995. "Myopic Loss Aversion and the Equity Premium Puzzle," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(1), pages 73-92.
    8. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-291, March.
    9. Michel Normandin, 1997. "Precautionary saving and the Deaton paradox," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 4(3), pages 187-190.
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    Cited by:

    1. Horst Zank, 2007. "On the Paradigm of Loss Aversion," The School of Economics Discussion Paper Series 0710, Economics, The University of Manchester.
    2. Park Hyeon, 2016. "Loss Aversion and Consumption Plans with Stochastic Reference Points," The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 16(1), pages 303-336, January.
    3. Horst Zank, 2010. "On probabilities and loss aversion," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 68(3), pages 243-261, March.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D1 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior
    • D8 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty
    • D9 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics
    • E2 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment

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