Utility from Accumulation
The possibility that individuals may derive utility from the mere fact of holding wealth has long been recognized. A simple intertemporal model featuring utility from accumulation is used here to examine consumption and savings, the choice between inter vivos gifts and bequests (both to descendants and to charities), and levels of annuitization. Introducing utility from accumulation helps to explain a number of empirical regularities that otherwise seem inconsistent with optimizing behavior. Moreover, because individuals who derive significant utility from accumulation will tend to save more and, in the long run, give more than others do, this source of utility may be especially important in analyzing savings behavior, gifts and bequests, and charitable contributions.
|Date of creation:||Dec 2009|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||published as Utility from Accumulation, National Tax Association Proceedings, 102nd Annual Conference 2009, 189-194 (2011).|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.|
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