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Keeping up with the Ageing Joneses

  • Fisher, Walter H.

    (Department of Economics and Finance, Institute for Advanced Studies, Vienna, Austria)

  • Heijdra, Ben J.

    (Department of Economics, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands)

In this paper we consider the implications of relative consumption externalities in the Blanchard-Yaari overlapping generations framework. Unlike most of the macroeconomic literature that studies this question, the differences between agents, and, thus, in their relative position, persist in equilibrium. We show in our fixed employment model that consumption externalities lower consumption and the capital stock in long-run equilibrium, a result in sharp contrast to the recent findings of Liu and Turnovsky (2005). In addition, we solve for the intertemporal path of the economy to investigate its response to demographic shocks, specifically, to permanent changes in the birth and death rates.

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File URL: http://www.ihs.ac.at/publications/eco/es-204.pdf
File Function: First version, 2007
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Paper provided by Institute for Advanced Studies in its series Economics Series with number 204.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ihs:ihsesp:204
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  1. Walter Fisher & Franz Hof, 2000. "Relative consumption, economic growth, and taxation," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 72(3), pages 241-262, October.
  2. Walter H. Fisher & IHS-Vienna & Franz X. Hof, 2006. "The Quest for Status and Endogenous Labor Supply: The Relative Wealth Framework," Computing in Economics and Finance 2006 60, Society for Computational Economics.
  3. Andrew B. Abel, . "Asset Prices Under Habit Formation and Catching Up With the Jones," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 01-90, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
  4. Calvo, Guillermo A & Obstfeld, Maurice, 1988. "Optimal Time-Consistent Fiscal Policy with Finite Lifetimes," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(2), pages 411-32, March.
  5. Van Long, Ngo & Shimomura, Koji, 2004. "Relative wealth, status-seeking, and catching-up," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 53(4), pages 529-542, April.
  6. Willem H. Buiter, 1984. "Fiscal policy in open, interdependent economies," NBER Working Papers 1429, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Futagami, Koichi & Shibata, Akihisa, 1998. "Keeping one step ahead of the Joneses: Status, the distribution of wealth, and long run growth," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 109-126, July.
  8. Layard, Richard, 1980. "Human Satisfactions and Public Policy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 90(363), pages 737-50, December.
  9. Harald Uhlig & Lars Ljungqvist, 2000. "Tax Policy and Aggregate Demand Management under Catching Up with the Joneses," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(3), pages 356-366, June.
  10. Heijdra, Ben J. & Ligthart, Jenny E., 2004. "The macroeconomic dynamics of demographic shocks," CCSO Working Papers 200403, University of Groningen, CCSO Centre for Economic Research.
  11. Ben J. Heijdra & Ward E. Romp, 2007. "Retirement, Pensions, and Ageing," CESifo Working Paper Series 1974, CESifo Group Munich.
  12. Ben J. Heijdra & Ward E. Romp, 2006. "Ageing and Growth in the Small Open Economy," CESifo Working Paper Series 1740, CESifo Group Munich.
  13. Bovenberg, A. Lans & Heijdra, Ben J., 1999. "Environmental abatement and intergenerational distribution," Research Report 99C63, University of Groningen, Research Institute SOM (Systems, Organisations and Management).
  14. Obstfeld, Maurice & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1995. "The intertemporal approach to the current account," Handbook of International Economics, in: G. M. Grossman & K. Rogoff (ed.), Handbook of International Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 34, pages 1731-1799 Elsevier.
  15. Walter H. Fisher, 2004. "Status Preference, Wealth and Dynamics in the Open Economy," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 5(3), pages 335-355, 08.
  16. Stephen Turnovsky & Goncalo Monteiro, 2006. "Consumption Externalities, Production Externalities, and Efficient Capital Accumulation under Time Non-Separable Preferences," Working Papers UWEC-2006-26-P, University of Washington, Department of Economics.
  17. Easterlin, Richard A., 1995. "Will raising the incomes of all increase the happiness of all?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 35-47, June.
  18. Oswald, Andrew, 1997. "Happiness and Economic Performance," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 478, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  19. Ben J. Heijdra & Ward E. Romp, 2008. "A life-cycle overlapping-generations model of the small open economy," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 60(1), pages 88-121, January.
  20. Corneo, Giacomo & Jeanne, Olivier, 2001. "On relative-wealth effects and long-run growth," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(4), pages 349-358, December.
  21. Frank, Robert H, 1985. "The Demand for Unobservable and Other Nonpositional Goods," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(1), pages 101-16, March.
  22. Bill Dupor & Wen-Fang Liu, 2003. "Jealousy and Equilibrium Overconsumption," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 423-428, March.
  23. Fisher, Walter H. & Hof, Franz X., 2005. "Status seeking in the small open economy," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 209-232, June.
  24. Corneo, Giacomo & Jeanne, Olivier, 1997. "On relative wealth effects and the optimality of growth," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 87-92, January.
  25. Gali, J., 1992. "Keeping Up with the Joneses: Consumption Externalities, Portfolio Choice and Asset Prices," Papers 92-22, Columbia - Graduate School of Business.
  26. Frank, Robert H, 1997. "The Frame of Reference as a Public Good," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(445), pages 1832-47, November.
  27. Francisco Alvarez-Cuadrado & Goncalo Monteiro & Stephen Turnovsky, 2004. "Habit Formation, Catching Up with the Joneses, and Economic Growth," Working Papers UWEC-2004-09-P, University of Washington, Department of Economics, revised Jan 2004.
  28. Olivier J. Blanchard, 1984. "Debt, Deficits and Finite Horizons," NBER Working Papers 1389, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  29. Michael Rauscher, 1997. "Conspicuous consumption, economic growth, and taxation," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 66(1), pages 35-42, February.
  30. Bettendorf, Leon J.H. & Heijdra, Ben J., 2006. "Population ageing and pension reform in a small open economy with non-traded goods," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 30(12), pages 2389-2424, December.
  31. Andrew B. Abel, 2005. "Optimal Taxation when Consumers Have Endogenous Benchmark Levels of Consumption," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(1), pages 21-42.
  32. Wen-Fang Liu & Stephen Turnovsky, 2003. "Consumption Externalities, Production Externalities, and the Accumulation of Capital," Working Papers UWEC-2002-13-P, University of Washington, Department of Economics, revised Nov 2003.
  33. repec:dgr:kubcen:1998100 is not listed on IDEAS
  34. Corneo, Giacomo & Jeanne, Olivier, 2001. " Status, the Distribution of Wealth, and Growth," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 103(2), pages 283-93, June.
  35. Ryder, Harl E, Jr & Heal, Geoffrey M, 1973. "Optimum Growth with Intertemporally Dependent Preferences," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(1), pages 1-33, January.
  36. Frenkel, Jacob A & Razin, Assaf, 1986. "Fiscal Policies in the World Economy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(3), pages 564-94, June.
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