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Consumption, Wealth and Business Cycles in Germany

  • Britta Hamburg
  • Mathias Hoffmann
  • Joachim Keller

This paper studies the long-run relationship between consumption, asset wealth and income in Germany, based on data from 1980 to 2003. While earlier studies — mostly for the Anglo-Saxon economies — have generally documented that departures of these three variables from their common trend signal changes in asset prices, we find that for Germany they predict changes in income. Asset price changes are found to have virtually no effect on consumption — both in the short as well as in the long-run. We offer an explanation of this finding that emphasizes differences between the bank-based German financial system and the rather market-based Anglo-American system: stock ownership by private households is much less widespread in Germany than in the Anglo-Saxon economies and the share of publicly traded equity in household wealth is much smaller in Germany than in the U.S., the UK or Australia.

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File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2005/wp-cesifo-2005-04/cesifo1_wp1443.pdf
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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 1443.

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Date of creation: 2005
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_1443
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  1. Martin Lettau & Sydney C. Ludvigson, 2004. "Understanding Trend and Cycle in Asset Values: Reevaluating the Wealth Effect on Consumption," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(1), pages 276-299, March.
  2. Gonzalo, Jesus & Granger, Clive W J, 1995. "Estimation of Common Long-Memory Components in Cointegrated Systems," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 13(1), pages 27-35, January.
  3. Hoffmann, Mathias, 2006. "Proprietary Income, Entrepreneurial Risk, and the Predictability of U.S. Stock Returns," Technical Reports 2006,14, Technische Universität Dortmund, Sonderforschungsbereich 475: Komplexitätsreduktion in multivariaten Datenstrukturen.
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  10. Sydney Ludvigson & Charles Steindel, 1998. "How important is the stock market effect on consumption?," Research Paper 9821, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  11. Saikkonen, Pentti & Lütkepohl, Helmut, 2001. "Testing for the cointegrating rank of a VAR process with structural shifts," SFB 373 Discussion Papers 1998,82, Humboldt University of Berlin, Interdisciplinary Research Project 373: Quantification and Simulation of Economic Processes.
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  13. Hoffmann, Mathias, 2000. "Long run recursive VAR models and QR decompositions," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 0015, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
  14. 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.
  15. Constantinides, George M & Duffie, Darrell, 1996. "Asset Pricing with Heterogeneous Consumers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(2), pages 219-40, April.
  16. Johansen, Soren, 1995. "Likelihood-Based Inference in Cointegrated Vector Autoregressive Models," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198774501, March.
  17. Sydney Ludvigson & Martin Lettau, 1999. "Consumption, aggregate wealth and expected stock returns," Staff Reports 77, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  18. Becker, Sascha O. & Hoffmann, Mathias, 2006. "Intra- and international risk-sharing in the short run and the long run," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 777-806, April.
  19. Alvin Tan & Graham Voss, 2003. "Consumption and Wealth in Australia," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 79(244), pages 39-56, 03.
  20. Cochrane, John H, 1994. "Permanent and Transitory Components of GNP and Stock Prices," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(1), pages 241-65, February.
  21. Emilio Fernandez-Corugedo & Simon Price & Andrew Blake, 2003. "The dynamics of consumers' expenditure: the UK consumption ECM redux," Bank of England working papers 204, Bank of England.
  22. Heaton, John & Lucas, Deborah, 2000. "Portfolio Choice in the Presence of Background Risk," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(460), pages 1-26, January.
  23. Hamburg, Britta & Hoffmann, Mathias & Keller, Joachim, 2005. "Consumption, wealth and business cycles: why is Germany different?," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2005,16, Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre.
  24. Poterba, James M & Venti, Steven F & Wise, David A, 1998. "401(k) Plans and Future Patterns of Retirement Saving," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 179-84, May.
  25. Jeremy Rudd & Karl Whelan, 2002. "A note on the cointegration of consumption, income, and wealth," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2002-53, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  26. Proietti, Tommaso, 1997. "Short-Run Dynamics in Cointegrated Systems," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 59(3), pages 405-22, August.
  27. Hodrick, Robert J, 1992. "Dividend Yields and Expected Stock Returns: Alternative Procedures for Inference and Measurement," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 5(3), pages 357-86.
  28. Hui Guo, 2001. "A simple model of limited stock market participation," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 37-47.
  29. Polkovnichenko, Valery, 2004. "Limited stock market participation and the equity premium," Finance Research Letters, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 24-34, March.
  30. John Y. Campbell & John Cochrane, 1999. "Force of Habit: A Consumption-Based Explanation of Aggregate Stock Market Behavior," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(2), pages 205-251, April.
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