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Presidential Address: How Revealing Is Revealed Preference?

  • Richard Blundell

    (University College London and Institute for Fiscal Studies,)

This lecture address the following two key criticisms of the empirical application of revealed preference theory: When the RP conditions do not reject, they do not provide precise predictions; and when they do reject, they do not help characterize the nature of irrationality or the degree/direction of changing tastes. Recent developments in the application of RP theory are shown to have rendered these criticisms unfounded. A powerful test of rationality is available that also provides a natural characterization of changing tastes. Tight bounds on demand responses and on the welfare costs of relative price and tax changes are also available and are shown to work well in practice. (JEL: D11, D12, C14) Copyright (c) 2005 The European Economic Association.

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Article provided by MIT Press in its journal Journal of the European Economic Association.

Volume (Year): 3 (2005)
Issue (Month): 2-3 (04/05)
Pages: 211-235

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:jeurec:v:3:y:2005:i:2-3:p:211-235
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