A Strategy for Evaluating the Opportunity Cost of Time Estimates from New Choice Margins
Information frictions imply it is reasonable to expect the same commodity, in a given location, to sell for different prices at the same time. Aguiar and Hurst (AH)  demonstrate how the search behavior implied by these price differences can be used estimate the opportunity cost of time. Their important insight allows the estimation of time prices over the lifecycle and the evaluation of the impacts of macro shocks on them. We provide the first assessment of the plausibility of this type of search behavior as a window on time prices. AH’s measures of the opportunity cost of time are shadow values that are jointly determined with individuals’ decision to search for bargains. Our analysis overcomes the challenges posed by this endogeneity by exploiting the complementarity between time and some types of market goods and services. We use changes in the expenditures for these goods in response to macro shocks as a basis for evaluating the AH choice margin. Using three different data sources we find that changes in expenditures on recreation related goods and services and time spent recreating are consistent with the AH framework’s assessment of the impact of the Great Recession for the opportunity cost of time.
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|Date of creation:||Apr 2017|
|Note:||EEE EFG PE|
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- Benhabib, Jess & Rogerson, Richard & Wright, Randall, 1991.
"Homework in Macroeconomics: Household Production and Aggregate Fluctuations,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(6), pages 1166-1187, December.
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- Peter Rupert & Richard Rogerson & Randall Wright, 1994. "Estimating substitution elasticities in household production models," Staff Report 186, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
- Mark Aguiar & Erik Hurst, 2007. "Life-Cycle Prices and Production," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(5), pages 1533-1559, December.
- Mark Aguiar & Erik Hurst, 2005. "Lifecycle Prices and Production," NBER Working Papers 11601, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Johannes Stroebel & Joseph Vavra, 2014. "House Prices, Local Demand, and Retail Prices," NBER Working Papers 20710, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Ströbel, Johannes & Vavra, Joseph, 2015. "House Prices, Local Demand, and Retail Prices," CEPR Discussion Papers 10612, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Johannes Ströbel & Joseph Vavra, 2015. "House Prices, Local Demand, and Retail Prices," CESifo Working Paper Series 5607, CESifo Group Munich.
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