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Sentiment Predictable Income and Habits in the Dynamics of Aggregate Consumption

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  • Martin Sommer

Abstract

This paper explores whether habit formation in the representative agent’s preferences can explain two failures of the standard permanent income model with intertemporally separable utility: the sensitivity of consumption to lagged consumer sentiment and to predictable changes in current income I show that in a habit formation model the sensitivity of consumption growth to predicted income can be to a large extent reinterpreted as a sluggish response of consumption to news Moreover the sensitivity of consumption growth to lagged sentiment merely reflects the serial corre-lation in consumption growth generated by habits I study the model’s predictions for the effect of the recent tax cut on aggregate consumption Contrary to the PIH model consumers with habits respond to permanent tax cuts slowly The estimated model predicts an immediate (first-quarter) MPC out of the permanent tax cut of only 30%

Suggested Citation

  • Martin Sommer, 2001. "Sentiment Predictable Income and Habits in the Dynamics of Aggregate Consumption," Economics Working Paper Archive 458, The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:jhu:papers:458
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Christopher D. Carroll, 1997. "Buffer-Stock Saving and the Life Cycle/Permanent Income Hypothesis," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(1), pages 1-55.
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    3. Pischke, Jorn-Steffen, 1995. "Individual Income, Incomplete Information, and Aggregate Consumption," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(4), pages 805-840, July.
    4. Jody Overland & Christopher D. Carroll & David N. Weil, 2000. "Saving and Growth with Habit Formation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(3), pages 341-355, June.
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    6. Christiano, Lawrence J & Eichenbaum, Martin & Marshall, David, 1991. "The Permanent Income Hypothesis Revisited," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(2), pages 397-423, March.
    7. Carroll, Christopher D & Fuhrer, Jeffrey C & Wilcox, David W, 1994. "Does Consumer Sentiment Forecast Household Spending? If So, Why?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1397-1408, December.
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    10. John Muellbauer, 1988. "Habits, Rationality and Myopia in the Life Cycle Consumption Function," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, issue 9, pages 47-70.
    11. Urban J. Jermann & Marianne Baxter, 1999. "Household Production and the Excess Sensitivity of Consumption to Current Income," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(4), pages 902-920, September.
    12. Matthew D. Shapiro & Joel Slemrod, 2003. "Consumer Response to Tax Rebates," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 381-396, March.
    13. Ferson, Wayne E. & Constantinides, George M., 1991. "Habit persistence and durability in aggregate consumption: Empirical tests," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 199-240, October.
    14. Constantinides, George M, 1990. "Habit Formation: A Resolution of the Equity Premium Puzzle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(3), pages 519-543, June.
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    17. Sydney C. Ludvigson & Alexander Michaelides, 2001. "Does Buffer-Stock Saving Explain the Smoothness and Excess Sensitivity of Consumption?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 631-647, June.
    18. Jermann, Urban J., 1998. "Asset pricing in production economies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 257-275, April.
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