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Minimum consumptions requirements: theoretical and quantitative implications for growth and distribution

  • Satyajit Chatterjee
  • B. Ravikumar
  • B. Ravikumar

The authors study the impact of a minimum consumption requirement on the rate of economic growth and the evolution of wealth distribution. The requirement introduces a positive dependence between the intertemporal elasticity of substitution and household wealth. This dependence implies a transition phase during which the growth rate of per-capita quantities rise toward their steady-state values and the distributions of wealth, consumption, and permanent income become more unequal. The authors calibrate the minimum consumption requirement to match estimates available for a sample of Indian villagers and find that these transitional effects are quantitatively significant and depend importantly on the economy's steady-state growth rate. NOTE: This paper refers to figures not currently available with this electronic version. For a hard copy of the figures, call the Research Department's Publications Desk at 215-574-6428 and ask for Working Paper 97-15.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia in its series Working Papers with number 97-15.

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Date of creation: 1997
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedpwp:97-15
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  1. Roland Benabou, 1996. "Inequality and Growth," NBER Working Papers 5658, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Rosenzweig, Mark R & Wolpin, Kenneth I, 1993. "Credit Market Constraints, Consumption Smoothing, and the Accumulation of Durable Production Assets in Low-Income Countries: Investment in Bullocks in India," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(2), pages 223-44, April.
  3. Caselli, F. & Ventura, J., 1996. "A Representative Consumer Theory of Distribution," Working papers 96-11, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  4. Chatterjee, Satyajit, 1994. "Transitional dynamics and the distribution of wealth in a neoclassical growth model," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 97-119, May.
  5. Masao Ogaki & Jonathan D. Ostry & Carmen M. Reinhart, 1996. "Saving Behavior in Low- and Middle-Income Developing Countries: A Comparison," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 43(1), pages 38-71, March.
  6. Townsend, R.M., 1991. "Risk and Insurance in Village India," University of Chicago - Economics Research Center 91-3, Chicago - Economics Research Center.
  7. Atkeson, A. & Ogaki, M., 1991. "Wealth-Varying Intertemporal Elasticities of Substitution Evidence from Panel and Aggregate Data," RCER Working Papers 303, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  8. Glomm, Gerhard & Ravikumar, B, 1992. "Public versus Private Investment in Human Capital Endogenous Growth and Income Inequality," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(4), pages 818-34, August.
  9. Lawrance, Emily C, 1991. "Poverty and the Rate of Time Preference: Evidence from Panel Data," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(1), pages 54-77, February.
  10. Easterly, William, 1991. "Economic stagnation, fixed factors, and policy thresholds," Policy Research Working Paper Series 795, The World Bank.
  11. Tamura, Robert, 1996. "Regional economies and market integration," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 20(5), pages 825-845, May.
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