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Precautionary saving under many risks


  • Donatella Baiardi


  • Marco Magnani


  • Mario Menegatti



This paper studies precautionary saving when many small risks are considered. We first introduce two simultaneous risks: labor income and interest rate risks. We show that, in this context, sufficient conditions for precautionary saving are weaker than in similar models. Moreover, we find that, unlike previous literature, precautionary saving can occur in the case of negative covariance between the two risks and in the case of imprudence. We then extend our analysis to a three-risk framework, where a background risk is included. We derive sufficient conditions for precautionary saving which are interpreted in the light of the previous literature. Copyright Springer-Verlag Wien 2014

Suggested Citation

  • Donatella Baiardi & Marco Magnani & Mario Menegatti, 2014. "Precautionary saving under many risks," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 113(3), pages 211-228, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jeczfn:v:113:y:2014:i:3:p:211-228
    DOI: 10.1007/s00712-013-0366-0

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Kimball, Miles S, 1990. "Precautionary Saving in the Small and in the Large," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(1), pages 53-73, January.
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    3. Jingyuan Li, 2012. "Precautionary saving in the presence of labor income and interest rate risks," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 106(3), pages 251-266, July.
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    10. Michel Denuit & Louis Eeckhoudt & Mario Menegatti, 2011. "Correlated risks, bivariate utility and optimal choices," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 46(1), pages 39-54, January.
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    12. Louis Eeckhoudt & Béatrice Rey & Harris Schlesinger, 2007. "A Good Sign for Multivariate Risk Taking," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 53(1), pages 117-124, January.
    13. Donatella Baiardi & Mario Menegatti, 2011. "Pigouvian tax, abatement policies and uncertainty on the environment," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 103(3), pages 221-251, July.
    14. Li, Jingyuan, 2011. "The demand for a risky asset in the presence of a background risk," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 146(1), pages 372-391, January.
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    16. Menegatti, Mario, 2001. "On the Conditions for Precautionary Saving," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 98(1), pages 189-193, May.
    17. Christian Gollier, 2010. "Discounting, Inequalities and Economic Convergence," CESifo Working Paper Series 3262, CESifo Group Munich.
    18. Rothschild, Michael & Stiglitz, Joseph E., 1971. "Increasing risk II: Its economic consequences," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 3(1), pages 66-84, March.
    19. Finkelshtain, Israel & Kella, Offer & Scarsini, Marco, 1999. "On risk aversion with two risks," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 239-250, March.
    20. Pratt, John W, 1988. "Aversion to One Risk in the Presence of Others," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 1(4), pages 395-413, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Maik Heinemann & Alexander Wulff, 2015. "Idiosyncratic Risk, Borrowing Constraints and Financial Integration - A Discussion of Ambiguous Results," Working Papers 2015019, Berlin Doctoral Program in Economics and Management Science (BDPEMS).
    2. Wang, Hongxia & Wang, Jianli & Li, Jingyuan & Xia, Xinping, 2015. "Precautionary paying for stochastic improvements under background risks," Insurance: Mathematics and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 180-185.
    3. Marco Magnani & Mario Menegatti, 2015. "Precautionary saving and changes in risk correlation," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 35(1), pages 561-570.
    4. Baiardi, Donatella & De Donno, Marzia & Magnani, Marco & Menegatti, Mario, 2015. "New results on precautionary saving under two risks," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 130(C), pages 17-20.
    5. Wulff, Alexander & Heinemann, Maik, 2015. "Idiosyncratic Risk, Borrowing Constraints and Financial Integration - A Discussion of Ambiguous Results," Annual Conference 2015 (Muenster): Economic Development - Theory and Policy 113165, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    6. Marco Magnani, 2017. "A new interpretation of the condition for precautionary saving in the presence of an interest-rate risk," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 120(1), pages 79-87, January.

    More about this item


    Precautionary saving; Labor income risk; Interest rate risk; Background risk; Prudence; Partial relative prudence; D81; E21; D11;

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • D11 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Theory


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