IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

The wrong shape of insurance? What cross-sectional distributions tell us about models of consumption-smoothing

  • Broer, Tobias
Registered author(s):

    This paper shows how two standard models of consumption risk-sharing - self-insurance through borrowing and saving and limited commitment to insurance contracts - replicate similarly well the standard, second-moment measures of insurance observed in US micro-data. A non-parametric analysis, however, reveals strongly contrasting and counterfactual joint distributions of consumption, income and wealth. Method of moments estimation shows how measurement error in consumption eliminates excessive skewness and concentration of consumption growth. Moreover, counterfactual non-linearities disappear at high estimated risk-aversion under self-insurance, but are a robust feature of limited commitment. Its "shape of insurance" thus argues strongly in favour of the self-insurance model.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL: http://www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=8701
    Download Restriction: CEPR Discussion Papers are free to download for our researchers, subscribers and members. If you fall into one of these categories but have trouble downloading our papers, please contact us at subscribers@cepr.org

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 8701.

    as
    in new window

    Length:
    Date of creation: Dec 2011
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:8701
    Contact details of provider: Postal: Centre for Economic Policy Research, 77 Bastwick Street, London EC1V 3PZ.
    Phone: 44 - 20 - 7183 8801
    Fax: 44 - 20 - 7183 8820

    Order Information: Email:


    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    as in new window
    1. Fatih Guvenen, 2007. "An Empirical Investigation of Labor Income Processes," NBER Working Papers 13394, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. MaCurdy, Thomas E., 1982. "The use of time series processes to model the error structure of earnings in a longitudinal data analysis," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 83-114, January.
    3. Erich Battistin & Richard Blundell & Arthur Lewbel, 2007. "Why is Consumption More Log Normal Than Income? Gibrat's Law Revisited," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 671, Boston College Department of Economics.
    4. Gaetano Bloise & Pietro Reichlin & Mario Tirelli, 2009. "Indeterminacy Of Competitive Equilibrium With Risk Of Default," Levine's Working Paper Archive 814577000000000313, David K. Levine.
    5. Heathcote, Jonathan & Storesletten, Kjetil & Violante, Giovanni L, 2007. "Consumption and Labour Supply with Partial Insurance: An Analytical Framework," CEPR Discussion Papers 6280, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    6. Ethan Ligon & Jonathan P Thomas & Tim Worrall, 1997. "Informal Insurance Arrangements in Village Economies," CRIEFF Discussion Papers 9705, Centre for Research into Industry, Enterprise, Finance and the Firm.
    7. Patrick Eozenou, 2009. "Optimal Risk Sharing Under Limited Commitment: Evidence From Rural Vietnam," Working Papers 06, Development and Policies Research Center (DEPOCEN), Vietnam.
    8. Ethan Ligon & Jonathan P. Thomas & Tim Worrall, 2002. "Informal Insurance Arrangements with Limited Commitment: Theory and Evidence from Village Economies," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(1), pages 209-244.
    9. Huggett, Mark, 1993. "The risk-free rate in heterogeneous-agent incomplete-insurance economies," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 17(5-6), pages 953-969.
    10. Igor Livshits & James MacGee & Michele Tertilt, 2003. "Consumer bankruptcy: a fresh start," Working Papers 617, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
    11. Naeem Ahmed & Matthew Brzozowski & Thomas Crossley, 2006. "Measurement errors in recall food consumption data," IFS Working Papers W06/21, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
    12. Pedro Albarran & Orazio P. Attanasio, 2003. "Limited Commitment and Crowding out of Private Transfers: Evidence from a Randomised Experiment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(486), pages C77-C85, March.
    13. Arpad Abraham & Eva Carceles-Poveda, 2006. "Complete Markets, Enforcement Constraints and Intermediation," Computing in Economics and Finance 2006 320, Society for Computational Economics.
    14. Thomas, Jonathan & Worrall, Tim, 1988. "Self-enforcing Wage Contracts," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(4), pages 541-54, October.
    15. Abigail Barr & Garance Genicot, 2008. "Risk Sharing, Commitment, and Information: An Experimental Analysis," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 6(6), pages 1151-1185, December.
    16. Deaton, Angus, 1992. "Understanding Consumption," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198288244, March.
    17. Richard Blundell & Luigi Pistaferri & Ian Preston, 2008. "Consumption Inequality and Partial Insurance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(5), pages 1887-1921, December.
    18. Jonathan P. Thomas & Tim Worrall, 2007. "Unemployment Insurance under Moral Hazard and Limited Commitment: Public versus Private Provision," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 9(1), pages 151-181, 02.
    19. Mark Bils & Mark Aguiar, 2010. "Has Consumption Inequality Mirrored Income Inequality?," 2010 Meeting Papers 1334, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    20. Orazio Attanasio & Nicola Pavoni, 2008. "Risk Sharing in Private Information Models with Asset Accumulation: Explaining the Excess Smoothness of Consumption," Carlo Alberto Notebooks 103, Collegio Carlo Alberto.
    21. Timothy J Kehoe & David K Levine, 1993. "Debt Constrained Asset Markets," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1276, David K. Levine.
    22. Campbell, John Y. & Mankiw, N. Gregory, 1990. "Permanent Income, Current Income, and Consumption," Scholarly Articles 3353762, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    23. Campbell, John Y & Deaton, Angus, 1989. "Why Is Consumption So Smooth?," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 56(3), pages 357-73, July.
    24. Cordoba, Juan Carlos, 2010. "US Inequality: Debt Constraints or Incomplete Asset Markets?," Staff General Research Papers 32120, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
    25. Kehoe, Timothy J & Levine, David K, 2001. "Liquidity Constrained Markets versus Debt Constrained Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(3), pages 575-98, May.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:8701. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ()

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.