IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/gamebe/v64y2008i1p121-145.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Conspicuous consumption dynamics

Author

Listed:
  • Friedman, Daniel
  • Ostrov, Daniel N.

Abstract

We formalize Veblen's idea of conspicuous consumption as two alternative forms of interdependent preferences, dubbed envy and pride. Agents adjust consumption patterns gradually, in the direction of increasing utility. From an arbitrary initial state, the distribution of consumption among agents with identical preferences converges to a unique equilibrium distribution. When pride is stronger, the equilibrium distribution has a right-skewed density. When envy is stronger, the equilibrium is concentrated at a single point, and the adjustment dynamics involve a shock wave that can be interpreted as a growing, moving, homogeneous "middle class."

Suggested Citation

  • Friedman, Daniel & Ostrov, Daniel N., 2008. "Conspicuous consumption dynamics," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 121-145, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:gamebe:v:64:y:2008:i:1:p:121-145
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0899-8256(08)00009-2
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Ernst Fehr & Klaus M. Schmidt, 1999. "A Theory of Fairness, Competition, and Cooperation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 817-868.
    2. Angus Deaton, 2003. "Health, Inequality, and Economic Development," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, pages 113-158.
    3. Abel, Andrew B, 1990. "Asset Prices under Habit Formation and Catching Up with the Joneses," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 38-42, May.
    4. JÃrg Oechssler & Frank Riedel, 2001. "Evolutionary dynamics on infinite strategy spaces," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), pages 141-162.
    5. Gary S. Becker & Kevin M. Murphy & Ivan Werning, 2005. "The Equilibrium Distribution of Income and the Market for Status," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(2), pages 282-310, April.
    6. Simon P. Anderson & Jacob K. Goeree & Charles A. Holt, 1998. "Rent Seeking with Bounded Rationality: An Analysis of the All-Pay Auction," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(4), pages 828-853, August.
    7. John Y. Campbell & John H. Cochrane, 1994. "By force of habit: a consumption-based explanation of aggregate stock market behavior," Working Papers 94-17, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
    8. George A. Akerlof, 1997. "Social Distance and Social Decisions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(5), pages 1005-1028, September.
    9. Larry Samuelson, 2004. "Information-Based Relative Consumption Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 72(1), pages 93-118, January.
    10. Ed Hopkins & Tatiana Kornienko, 2004. "Running to Keep in the Same Place: Consumer Choice as a Game of Status," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(4), pages 1085-1107, September.
    11. Robson, Arthur J, 1992. "Status, the Distribution of Wealth, Private and Social Attitudes to Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(4), pages 837-857, July.
    12. Sonnenschein, Hugo, 1982. "Price Dynamics Based on the Adjustment of Firms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(5), pages 1088-1096, December.
    13. Oechssler, Jorg & Riedel, Frank, 2002. "On the Dynamic Foundation of Evolutionary Stability in Continuous Models," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 107(2), pages 223-252, December.
    14. Pollak, Robert A, 1976. "Interdependent Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 66(3), pages 309-320, June.
    15. Anthony Downs, 1957. "An Economic Theory of Political Action in a Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 65, pages 135-135.
    16. Shlomo Yitzhaki, 1979. "Relative Deprivation and the Gini Coefficient," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 93(2), pages 321-324.
    17. Cole, Harold L & Mailath, George J & Postlewaite, Andrew, 1992. "Social Norms, Savings Behavior, and Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(6), pages 1092-1125, December.
    18. Harald Uhlig & Lars Ljungqvist, 2000. "Tax Policy and Aggregate Demand Management under Catching Up with the Joneses," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(3), pages 356-366, June.
    19. Matthew Rabin, 1998. "Psychology and Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(1), pages 11-46, March.
    20. William H. Sandholm, 2005. "Population Games and Evolutionary Dynamics," Levine's Bibliography 784828000000000210, UCLA Department of Economics.
    21. Veblen, Thorstein, 1899. "The Theory of the Leisure Class," History of Economic Thought Books, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, number veblen1899, December.
    22. Bagwell, Laurie Simon & Bernheim, B Douglas, 1996. "Veblen Effects in a Theory of Conspicuous Consumption," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 349-373, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Frédéric Gavrel, 2016. "Keeping Up with the Joneses as an Outcome of Getting Ahead of the Smiths. A Two-Stage Veblenian Status Game," Working Papers halshs-01319593, HAL.
    2. Friedman, Daniel & Singh, Nirvikar, 2009. "Equilibrium vengeance," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 66(2), pages 813-829, July.
    3. Friedman, Daniel & Ostrov, Daniel N., 2010. "Gradient dynamics in population games: Some basic results," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(5), pages 691-707, September.
    4. Friedman, Daniel & Abraham, Ralph, 2008. "Bubblesandcrashes:Gradientdynamicsinï¬ nancial markets," Santa Cruz Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt3905j8kq, Department of Economics, UC Santa Cruz.
    5. Chi, Feng & Yang, Nathan, 2010. "Wealth and Status: Analyzing the Perceived Attractiveness of 2010 FIFA World Cup Players," MPRA Paper 23881, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Frédéric Gavrel & Thérèse Rebière, 2017. "On the Equilibrium and Welfare Consequences of Getting Ahead of the Smiths," Post-Print halshs-01242504, HAL.
    7. Ed Hopkins, 2008. "Inequality, happiness and relative concerns: What actually is their relationship?," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 6(4), pages 351-372, December.
    8. Sandholm, William H., 2015. "Population Games and Deterministic Evolutionary Dynamics," Handbook of Game Theory with Economic Applications, Elsevier.
    9. Hopkins, Ed & Kornienko, Tatiana, 2009. "Status, affluence, and inequality: Rank-based comparisons in games of status," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 552-568, November.
    10. Lahkar, Ratul & Seymour, Robert M., 2013. "Reinforcement learning in population games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 80(C), pages 10-38.
    11. Frédéric Gavrel & Thérèse Rebière, 2015. "On the Equilibrium and Welfare Consequences of Going Ahead of the Smiths," Working Papers halshs-01242504, HAL.
    12. repec:spr:jhappi:v:18:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1007_s10902-016-9768-3 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Ed Hopkins & Tatiana Kornienko, 2006. "Methods of Comparison in Games of Status," ESE Discussion Papers 138, Edinburgh School of Economics, University of Edinburgh.
    14. Friedman, Daniel & Abraham, Ralph, 2009. "Bubbles and crashes: Gradient dynamics in financial markets," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 922-937, April.

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:gamebe:v:64:y:2008:i:1:p:121-145. 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: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622836 .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.