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Production and Inventory Dynamics under Ambiguity Aversion

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Abstract

We propose a production-cost smoothing model with Knightian uncertainty due to ambiguity aversion to study the joint behavior of production, inventories, and sales. Our model can explain four facts that previous studies find difficult to account for simultaneously: (i) the high volatility of production relative to sales, (ii) the low ratio of inventory-investment volatility to sales volatility, (iii) the positive correlation between sales and inventories, and (iv) the negative correlation between the inventory-to-sales ratio and sales. We find that the stock-out avoidance motive (Kahn 1987) emerges endogenously in our model, reconciling the long debate in the inventory literature over the production- cost smoothing and the stock-out avoidance models.

Suggested Citation

  • Yulei Luo & Jun Nie & Xiaowen Wang & Eric R. Young, 2021. "Production and Inventory Dynamics under Ambiguity Aversion," Research Working Paper RWP 21-05, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedkrw:93094
    DOI: 10.18651/RWP2021-05
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Ambiguity Aversion; Robustness; Knightian Uncertainty; Inventories; Production Cost Smoothing;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics
    • G15 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - International Financial Markets

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