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Saving Rate Dynamics in the Neoclassical Growth Model — Hyperbolic Discounting and Observational Equivalence

Author

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  • Y. Hossein Farzin

    () (University of California at Davis)

  • Ronald Wendner

    () (Karl-Franzens University of Graz)

Abstract

The standard neoclassical growth model with Cobb-Douglas production predicts a mono- tonically declining saving rate, when reasonably calibrated. Ample empirical evidence, however, shows that the transition path of a countrys saving rate exhibits a rising or non- monotonic pattern. In important cases, hyperbolic discounting, which is empirically strongly supported, implies transitional dynamics of the saving rate that accords well with empirical evidence. This holds true even in a growth model with Cobb-Douglas production technology. We also identify those cases in which hyperbolic discounting is observation- ally equivalent to exponential discounting. In those cases, hyperbolic discounting does not affect the saving rate dynamics. Numerical simulations employing a generalized class of hyperbolic discounting functions that we term regular discounting functions support the results.

Suggested Citation

  • Y. Hossein Farzin & Ronald Wendner, 2013. "Saving Rate Dynamics in the Neoclassical Growth Model — Hyperbolic Discounting and Observational Equivalence," Graz Economics Papers 2013-05, University of Graz, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:grz:wpaper:2013-05
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Gong, Liutang & Smith, William & Zou, Heng-fu, 2007. "Consumption and Risk with hyperbolic discounting," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 96(2), pages 153-160, August.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Saving rate; non-monotonic transition path; hyperbolic discounting; regular discounting; commitment; short planning horizon; neoclassical growth model;

    JEL classification:

    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • O40 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General

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