IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/mrr/papers/wp037.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

What to Expect when you are Expecting Rationality: Testing Rational Expectations using Micro Data

Author

Listed:
  • Hugo Benítez-Silva

    (SUNY – Stony Brook)

  • Debra S. Dwyer

    (SUNY – Stony Brook)

Abstract

This paper tests the Rational Expectations (RE) hypothesis regarding retirement expectations, controlling for sample selection, reporting biases, and unobserved heterogeneity. We find that retirement expectations in the Health and Retirement Study (HRS) are consistent with the RE hypothesis. We also examine how a wide array of factors, such as wealth, income, health insurance, pensions, and health status influence retirement expectations formation using panel data from all available waves of the HRS. We further analyze how new information affects the evolution of retirement expectations and discover that, on average, individuals correctly anticipate most uncertain events when planning their retirement, except for some health conditions and economic factors. Our results have important implications for a wide variety of models in economics that assume rational behavior.

Suggested Citation

  • Hugo Benítez-Silva & Debra S. Dwyer, 2003. "What to Expect when you are Expecting Rationality: Testing Rational Expectations using Micro Data," Working Papers wp037, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
  • Handle: RePEc:mrr:papers:wp037
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.mrrc.isr.umich.edu/publications/Papers/pdf/wp037.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Lovell, Michael C, 1986. "Tests of the Rational Expectations Hypothesis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(1), pages 110-124, March.
    2. Christopher F Baum & Mark E. Schaffer & Steven Stillman, 2003. "Instrumental variables and GMM: Estimation and testing," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 3(1), pages 1-31, March.
    3. Kajal Lahiri, 2005. "Analysis of Panel Data," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 87(4), pages 1093-1095.
    4. Sargent, Thomas J. & Wallace, Neil, 1976. "Rational expectations and the theory of economic policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(2), pages 169-183, April.
    5. Lumsdaine, Robin L. & Mitchell, Olivia S., 1999. "New developments in the economic analysis of retirement," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 49, pages 3261-3307 Elsevier.
    6. B. Douglas Bernheim, 1987. "Social Security Benefits: An Empirical Study of Expectations and Realizations," NBER Working Papers 2257, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Gramlich, Edward M, 1983. "Models of Inflation Expectations Formation: A Comparison of Household and Economist Forecasts," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 15(2), pages 155-173, May.
    8. B. Douglas Bernheim, 1989. "The Timing of Retirement: A Comparison of Expectations and Realizations," NBER Chapters,in: The Economics of Aging, pages 335-358 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Douglas Staiger & James H. Stock, 1997. "Instrumental Variables Regression with Weak Instruments," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 65(3), pages 557-586, May.
    10. Francis Vella, 1998. "Estimating Models with Sample Selection Bias: A Survey," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 33(1), pages 127-169.
    11. Stock, James H & Wright, Jonathan H & Yogo, Motohiro, 2002. "A Survey of Weak Instruments and Weak Identification in Generalized Method of Moments," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(4), pages 518-529, October.
    12. Dwyer, Debra Sabatini & Mitchell, Olivia S., 1999. "Health problems as determinants of retirement: Are self-rated measures endogenous?," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 173-193, April.
    13. Stephen Bond & Céline Nauges & Frank Windmeijer, 2002. "Unit Roots and Identification in Autoregressive Panel Data Models: A Comparison of Alternative Tests," 10th International Conference on Panel Data, Berlin, July 5-6, 2002 C5-4, International Conferences on Panel Data.
    14. J. Dominitz & C. F. Manski, "undated". "Using expectations data to study subjective income expectations," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1050-94, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
    15. Leonard, Jonathan S, 1982. "Wage Expectations in the Labor Market: Survey Evidence on Rationality," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 64(1), pages 157-161, February.
    16. B. Douglas Bernheim, 1990. "How Do the Elderly Form Expectations? An Analysis of Responses to New Information," NBER Chapters,in: Issues in the Economics of Aging, pages 259-286 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    17. Michael Hurd & Monika Reti, 2003. "The Effects of Large Capital Gains on Work and Consumption: Evidence from Four Waves of the HRS," Working Papers 03-14, RAND Corporation.
    18. Christiansen, Charlotte, 2003. "Testing the expectations hypothesis using long-maturity forward rates," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 78(2), pages 175-180, February.
    19. Prescott, Edward C., 1977. "Should control theory be used for economic stabilization?," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 13-38, January.
    20. Jeff Dominitz & Charles F. Manski, 1996. "Eliciting Student Expectations of the Returns to Schooling," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 31(1), pages 1-26.
    21. Figlewski, Stephen & Wachtel, Paul, 1981. "The Formation of Inflationary Expectations," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 63(1), pages 1-10, February.
    22. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1972. "Expectations and the neutrality of money," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 103-124, April.
    23. Fair, Ray C, 1993. "Testing the Rational Expectations Hypothesis in Macroeconometric Models," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 45(2), pages 169-190, April.
    24. Warren Young & William Darity, Jr., 2001. "The Early History of Rational and Implicit Expectations," History of Political Economy, Duke University Press, vol. 33(4), pages 773-813, Winter.
    25. Debra S. Dwyer & Jianting Hu, "undated". "Retirement Expectations and Realizations: The Role of Health Shocks and Economic Factors," Pension Research Council Working Papers 98-18, Wharton School Pension Research Council, University of Pennsylvania.
    26. Vella, Francis & Verbeek, Marno, 1999. "Two-step estimation of panel data models with censored endogenous variables and selection bias," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 90(2), pages 239-263, June.
    27. Jeff Dominitz & Charles F. Manski & Jordan Heinz, 2002. "Social Security Expectations and Retirement Savings Decisions," NBER Working Papers 8718, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    28. Simon, Herbert A, 1979. "Rational Decision Making in Business Organizations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(4), pages 493-513, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Katherine G. Abraham & Susan N. Houseman, 2005. "Work and Retirement Plans among Older Americans," Book chapters authored by Upjohn Institute researchers,in: Robert L. Clark & Olivia S. Mitchell (ed.), Reinventing the Retirement Paradigm, pages 70-91 W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
    2. Ricky Kanabar, 2012. "Unretirement in England: An empirical perspective," Discussion Papers 12/31, Department of Economics, University of York.
    3. Hugo Benítez-Silva & Debra Dwyer & Wayne-Roy Gayle & Thomas Muench, 2008. "Expectations in micro data: rationality revisited," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 34(2), pages 381-416, March.
    4. Steven J. Haider & Melvin Stephens, 2007. "Is There a Retirement-Consumption Puzzle? Evidence Using Subjective Retirement Expectations," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(2), pages 247-264, May.
    5. Benitez-Silva, Hugo & Dwyer, Debra S., 2006. "Expectation formation of older married couples and the rational expectations hypothesis," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 191-218, April.
    6. Hugo Benítez-Silva, 2003. "Labor Supply Flexibility and Portfolio Choice: An Empirical Analysis," Working Papers wp056, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.

    More about this item

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:mrr:papers:wp037. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (MRRC Administrator). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/isumius.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.