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Ambiguity aversion and the absence of wage indexation

  • Mukerji, Sujoy
  • Tallon, Jean-Marc

This paper analyzes optimal wage contracting assuming agents are not subjective expected utility maximizers but are, instead, ambiguity (or uncertainty) averse decision makers who maximize Choquet expected utility. We show that such agents will choose not to include any indexation coverage in their wage contracts even when inflation is uncertain, unless the perceived inflation uncertainty is high enough. Significantly, the exercise does not presume any exogenous costs (e.g. transactions costs) of including indexation links.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Monetary Economics.

Volume (Year): 51 (2004)
Issue (Month): 3 (April)
Pages: 653-670

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Handle: RePEc:eee:moneco:v:51:y:2004:i:3:p:653-670
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505566

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  1. Jovanic, Boyan & Ueda, Masako, 1997. "Contracts and Money," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(4), pages 700-708, August.
  2. Tallon, Jean-Marc, 1998. "Asymmetric Information, Nonadditive Expected Utility, and the Information Revealed by Prices: An Example," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(2), pages 329-42, May.
  3. Sujoy Mukerji, 1996. "Understanding the nonadditive probability decision model (*)," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 9(1), pages 23-46.
  4. Mukerji, Sujoy, 1998. "Ambiguity Aversion and Incompleteness of Contractual Form," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(5), pages 1207-31, December.
  5. Gray, Jo Anna, 1976. "Wage indexation: A macroeconomic approach," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(2), pages 221-235, April.
  6. David Card, 1984. "An Empirical Model of Wage Indexation Provisions in Union Contracts," NBER Working Papers 1388, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Robert J. Shiller, 1997. "Public Resistance to Indexation: A Puzzle," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 28(1), pages 159-228.
  8. Fischer, Stanley, 1977. "Wage indexation and macroeconomics stability," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 107-147, January.
  9. Gilboa, Itzhak & Schmeidler, David, 1989. "Maxmin expected utility with non-unique prior," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 141-153, April.
  10. Mukerji, Sujoy & Tallon, Jean-Marc, 2001. "Ambiguity Aversion and Incompleteness of Financial Markets," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 68(4), pages 883-904, October.
  11. Holland, A Steven, 1995. "Inflation and Wage Indexation in the Postwar United States," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 77(1), pages 172-76, February.
  12. Mukerji, S. & Tallon, J.-M., 2000. "Ambiguity Aversion and the Absence of Indexed Debt," Economics Series Working Papers 9928, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  13. David Schmeidler, 1989. "Subjective Probability and Expected Utility without Additivity," Levine's Working Paper Archive 7662, David K. Levine.
  14. Lars Peter Hansen & Thomas J. Sargent & Thomas D. Tallarini Jr., 1997. "Robust Permanent Income and Pricing," Levine's Working Paper Archive 596, David K. Levine.
  15. Daniel Ellsberg, 2000. "Risk, Ambiguity and the Savage Axioms," Levine's Working Paper Archive 7605, David K. Levine.
  16. Gray, Jo Anna, 1978. "On Indexation and Contract Length," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(1), pages 1-18, February.
  17. Epstein, Larry G & Wang, Tan, 1994. "Intertemporal Asset Pricing Under Knightian Uncertainty," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 62(2), pages 283-322, March.
  18. Farber, Henry S, 1978. "Individual Preferences and Union Wage Determination: The Case of the United Mine Workers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(5), pages 923-42, October.
  19. Dow, James & Werlang, Sergio Ribeiro da Costa, 1992. "Uncertainty Aversion, Risk Aversion, and the Optimal Choice of Portfolio," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(1), pages 197-204, January.
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