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Does Home Production Replace Consumption Spending? Evidence from Shocks in Housing Wealth in the Great Recession

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  • Jim Been

    (Leiden University and Netspar)

  • Susann Rohwedder

    (RAND Corp., MEA, and Netspar)

  • Michael Hurd

    (RAND Corp., NBER, MEA, and Netspar)

Abstract

Becker's theory of home production suggests substitutability between consumption spending and home production. Using panel data with detailed information on spending and time use, we analyze households' ability to replace consumption spending by home-produced counterparts. Keeping wages fixed and changing lifetime resources by the shock to housing wealth during the Great Recession, we estimate an elasticity of substitution that is consistent with a life cycle Becker model. However, we estimate that only about 11% of total spending is replaceable by home production, which, in contrast to prior literature, makes it unlikely that home production fully mitigates the consequences of wealth shocks to well-being.

Suggested Citation

  • Jim Been & Susann Rohwedder & Michael Hurd, 2020. "Does Home Production Replace Consumption Spending? Evidence from Shocks in Housing Wealth in the Great Recession," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 102(1), pages 113-128, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:102:y:2020:i:1:p:113-128
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    Cited by:

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