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Incomplete information and the time series behaviour of consumption

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  • David Demery

    (Department of Economics, University of Bristol, 8 Woodland Road, Bristol, BS8 1TN, UK)

  • Nigel W. Duck

    (Department of Economics, University of Bristol, 8 Woodland Road, Bristol, BS8 1TN, UK)

Abstract

Pischke (1995) uses both microeconomic and macroeconomic US data to test the idea that, within an otherwise standard PIH framework, ignorance by agents of aggregate labour income can account for the observed degree of excess smoothness and sensitivity in consumption. His tests involve only the second moments of aggregate consumption and labour income. In this paper our main aim is to identify and test the restrictions his model implies for aggregate consumption dynamics, using US quarterly data over the period 1959-1996, but our framework allows us also to test an earlier, related model of Goodfriend (1992). We find that both models can be formally rejected: ignorance of aggregate labour income cannot by itself account for aggregate consumption dynamics; some other relaxation of the assumptions of the standard PIH is required. We give an example of one possible such relaxation and present evidence indicating that Pischke's version of imperfect information may, within that framework, have a significant role to play. Copyright © 2000 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • David Demery & Nigel W. Duck, 2000. "Incomplete information and the time series behaviour of consumption," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(4), pages 355-366.
  • Handle: RePEc:jae:japmet:v:15:y:2000:i:4:p:355-366
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Hall, Robert E, 1978. "Stochastic Implications of the Life Cycle-Permanent Income Hypothesis: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(6), pages 971-987, December.
    2. Zeldes, Stephen P, 1989. "Consumption and Liquidity Constraints: An Empirical Investigation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(2), pages 305-346, April.
    3. Hayashi, Fumio & Sims, Christopher A, 1983. "Nearly Efficient Estimation of Time Series Models with Predetermined, but Not Exogenous, Instruments," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(3), pages 783-798, May.
    4. Goodfriend, Marvin, 1992. "Information-Aggregation Bias," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 508-519, June.
    5. Deaton, Angus, 1991. "Saving and Liquidity Constraints," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(5), pages 1221-1248, September.
    6. Pischke, Jorn-Steffen, 1995. "Individual Income, Incomplete Information, and Aggregate Consumption," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 805-840, July.
    7. John Campbell & Angus Deaton, 1989. "Why is Consumption So Smooth?," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(3), pages 357-373.
    8. Christiano, Lawrence J & Eichenbaum, Martin & Marshall, David, 1991. "The Permanent Income Hypothesis Revisited," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(2), pages 397-423, March.
    9. Attfield, C. L. F. & Demery, D. & Duck, N. W., 1992. "Partial adjustment and the permanent income hypothesis," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(6), pages 1205-1222, August.
    10. John Y. Campbell & N. Gregory Mankiw, 1989. "Consumption, Income and Interest Rates: Reinterpreting the Time Series Evidence," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1989, Volume 4, pages 185-246 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Campbell, John Y & Mankiw, N Gregory, 1990. "Permanent Income, Current Income, and Consumption," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 8(3), pages 265-279, July.
    12. Fumio Hayashi, 1985. "The Permanent Income Hypothesis and Consumption Durability: Analysis Based on Japanese Panel Data," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 100(4), pages 1083-1113.
    13. Cochrane, John H, 1989. "The Sensitivity of Tests of the Intertemporal Allocation of Consumption to Near-Rational Alternatives," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(3), pages 319-337, June.
    14. Joseph G. Altonji & Aloysius Siow, 1987. "Testing the Response of Consumption to Income Changes with (Noisy) Panel Data," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 102(2), pages 293-328.
    15. Flavin, Marjorie A, 1981. "The Adjustment of Consumption to Changing Expectations about Future Income," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(5), pages 974-1009, October.
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    Cited by:

    1. Pozzi, Lorenzo, 2010. "Idiosyncratic labour income risk and aggregate consumption: An unobserved component approach," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 169-184, March.
    2. Huang, Yu-Lieh & Huang, Chao-Hsi & Kuan, Chung-Ming, 2008. "Reexamining the permanent income hypothesis with uncertainty in permanent and transitory innovation states," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 30(4), pages 1816-1836, December.
    3. repec:kap:iaecre:v:10:y:2004:i:3:p:165-179 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Luis Gil-Alana, 2004. "The permanent income hypothesis: A new framework based on fractional integration and cointegration," International Advances in Economic Research, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 10(3), pages 165-179, October.
    5. Luis A. Gil-Alana & Antonio Moreno & Seonghoon Cho, 2012. "The Deaton paradox in a long memory context with structural breaks," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(25), pages 3309-3322, September.
    6. Pozzi, Lorenzo, 2006. "Ricardian equivalence under imperfect information," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(10-11), pages 2009-2026, November.
    7. Demery, David & Duck, Nigel W., 2007. "The theory of rational expectations and the interpretation of macroeconomic data," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 1-18, March.
    8. David Demery & Nigel Duck, 2002. "Optimally Rational Expectations and Macroeconomics," Bristol Economics Discussion Papers 02/533, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.

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