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The Spirit of Capitalism, Precautionary Savings, and Consumption

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  • YULEI LUO
  • WILLIAM T. SMITH
  • HENG-FU ZOU

Abstract

Recent research has shown that the "spirit of capitalism"-a preference for wealth itself, in addition to consumption-has important implications for growth and asset pricing. This paper explores how the spirit of capitalism affects saving and consumption behavior. We demonstrate that the spirit of capitalism may reduce the importance of precautionary savings. It can also explain the excess sensitivity puzzle: the spirit of capitalism causes dramatic deviations from a random walk. It may also offer a partial explanation of the excess smoothness puzzle. Copyright (c) 2009 The Ohio State University.

Suggested Citation

  • Yulei Luo & William T. Smith & Heng-Fu Zou, 2009. "The Spirit of Capitalism, Precautionary Savings, and Consumption," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 41(2-3), pages 543-554, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:mcb:jmoncb:v:41:y:2009:i:2-3:p:543-554
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Gong, Liutang & Zou, Heng-Fu, 2001. "Money, Social Status, and Capital Accumulation in a Cash-in-Advance Model," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 33(2), pages 284-293, May.
    2. Zou, Heng-fu, 1994. "'The spirit of capitalism' and long-run growth," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 279-293, July.
    3. Gong, Liutang & Zou, Heng-fu, 2002. "Direct preferences for wealth, the risk premium puzzle, growth, and policy effectiveness," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 247-270, February.
    4. John Campbell & Angus Deaton, 1989. "Why is Consumption So Smooth?," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(3), pages 357-373.
    5. Wang, Neng, 2006. "Generalizing the permanent-income hypothesis: Revisiting Friedman's conjecture on consumption," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(4), pages 737-752, May.
    6. Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas & Jonathan A. Parker, 2002. "Consumption Over the Life Cycle," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(1), pages 47-89, January.
    7. Campbell, John Y., 1994. "Inspecting the mechanism: An analytical approach to the stochastic growth model," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 463-506, June.
    8. Luo, Yulei & Young, Eric R., 2009. "The Wealth Distribution And The Demand For Status," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 13(S1), pages 1-30, May.
    9. Heng-fu Zou, 1995. "The spirit of capitalism and savings behavior," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 131-143, September.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Wang, Haijun, 2016. "Precautionary saving demand and consumption dynamics with the spirit of capitalism and regime switching," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 48-65.
    2. Shiyuan Pan & Mengbo Zhang & Heng-fu Zou, 2013. "The Effects of Patent Protection: A Growth Model with Status Preference," CEMA Working Papers 574, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.
    3. Yulei Luo & William T. Smith & Heng-fu Zou, 2009. "The Spirit of Capitalism and Excess Smoothness," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 10(2), pages 281-301, November.
    4. Shu-Hua Chen, 2012. "On the Growth and Stability Effects of Habit Formation and Durability in Consumption," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 13(2), pages 283-298, November.
    5. Shiyuan Pan & Mengbo Zhang & Heng-fu Zou, 2011. "Status Preference and the Effects of Patent Protection: Theory and Evidence," CEMA Working Papers 588, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.
    6. Qin Wang & Yiheng Zou & Yu Ren & Zhuo Huang, 2015. "The Spirit of Capitalism and the Equity Premium," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 16(2), pages 493-513, November.
    7. Wang, Gaowang & Zou, Heng-fu, 2011. "The Effects of Macroeconomic Policies in a Mercantilist Economy," MPRA Paper 73305, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 25 Aug 2016.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C61 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Optimization Techniques; Programming Models; Dynamic Analysis
    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth

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