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Determinants of private consumption

  • A. Bayar
  • K. Mc Morrow
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    This paper looks at the evolution of consumption theory over time and critically examines the widely accepted permanent income / life cycle hypotheses concerning consumer behaviour in terms of the empirical evidence. Attention is also devoted to the role of time horizon, time preference and capital market imperfections in determining the consumption / savings split of individual consumers. The paper points out the forecasting inadequacies of an essentially Keynesian framework due to its insufficient attention to expectations and forward looking behaviour. The likely key influences on consumption trends in the Community over the medium to long run are examined including the reaction of consumption to both ongoing budgetary consolidation and financial liberalisation, the impact of taxation and social welfare reforms and finally the effect of demographic changes.

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    Paper provided by Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission in its series European Economy - Economic Papers 2008 - 2015 with number 135.

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    Length: 32 pages
    Date of creation: May 1999
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:euf:ecopap:0135
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    1. Jagadeesh Gokhale & Laurence J. Kotlikoff & John Sabelhaus, 1996. "Understanding the Postwar Decline in U.S. Saving: A Cohort Analysis," NBER Working Papers 5571, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Christopher D. Carroll, 1996. "Buffer-Stock Saving and the Life Cycle/Permanent Income Hypothesis," NBER Working Papers 5788, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Berg, Lennart, 1994. "Household Savings and Debts: The Experience of the Nordic Countries," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 10(2), pages 42-53, Summer.
    4. John Y. Campbell, 1996. "Consumption and the Stock Market: Interpreting International Experience," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1763, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
    5. Jappelli, Tullio & Pistaferri, Luigi, 1997. "Using Subjective Income Expectations to Test for Excess Sensitivity of Consumption to Predicted Income Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 1617, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    6. Masson, Paul R & Bayoumi, Tamim & Samiei, Hossein, 1998. "International Evidence on the Determinants of Private Saving," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 12(3), pages 483-501, September.
    7. Gertler, Mark, 1999. "Government debt and social security in a life-cycle economy," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 61-110, June.
    8. Carruth, Alan & Henley, Andrew, 1990. "Can Existing Consumption Functions Forecast Consumer Spending in the Late 1980's?," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 52(2), pages 211-22, May.
    9. 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.
    10. repec:fth:harver:1435 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Stephen Zeldes, . "Consumption and Liquidity Constraints: An Empirical Investigation," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 24-85, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
    12. Scott, Andrew, 1996. "Consumption, 'Credit Crunches' and Financial Deregulation," CEPR Discussion Papers 1389, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    13. Steven F. Venti & David A. Wise, 1996. "The Wealth of Cohorts: Retirement Saving and the Changing Assets of Older Americans," NBER Working Papers 5609, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Werner Roeger & Jan in 't Veld, 1997. "QUEST II. A Multi-Country Business Cycle and Growth Model," European Economy - Economic Papers 2008 - 2015 123, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.
    15. Miles, David, 1999. "Modelling the Impact of Demographic Change upon the Economy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(452), pages 1-36, January.
    16. Adrian Blundell-Wignall & Frank Browne & Stefano Cavaglia, 1991. "Financial Liberalisation and Consumption Behaviour," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 81, OECD Publishing.
    17. Bayoumi, Tamim, 1995. "Explaining Consumption: A Simple Test of Alternative Hypotheses," CEPR Discussion Papers 1289, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    18. Richard Kohl & Paul O'Brien, 1998. "The Macroeconomics of Ageing, Pensions and Savings: A Survey," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 200, OECD Publishing.
    19. Tim Callen & Christian Thimann, 1997. "Empirical Determinants of Household Saving; Evidence From OECD Countries," IMF Working Papers 97/181, International Monetary Fund.
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