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Parental altruism, life expectancy and dynamically inefficient equilibria

  • d'Albis, Hippolyte
  • Decreuse, Bruno

Macrodynamic models with finite lifetime and selfish individuals may feature (dynamically) inefficient equilibria, while models with infinite lifetime and altruistic individuals cannot. Do strong intergenerational altruism and high life expectancy prevent the occurence of inefficient equilibria? To answer this question, we present a continuous time OLG model which generalizes the Blanchard-Buiter-Weil model. Our main innovation relies on the introduction of parental altruism, whose intensity is variable. We show that parental altruism and life expectancy actually favor overaccumulation. Theoretical results are illustrated by a parametrization from US data. Our numerical exercises suggest that the US economy is dynamically inefficient, mainly because life expectancy is sufficiently short.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 3629.

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Date of creation: Mar 2007
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:3629
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  1. Okuno, Masahiro & Zilcha, Itzhak, 1980. "On the Efficiency of a Competitive Equilibrium in Infinite Horizon Monetary Economies," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(4), pages 797-807, July.
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  3. Edmond S. Phelps, 1964. "Second Essay on the Golden Rule of Accumulation," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 173, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
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  7. Shell, Karl, 1971. "Notes on the Economics of Infinity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 79(5), pages 1002-11, Sept.-Oct.
  8. Barro, Robert J, 1974. "Are Government Bonds Net Wealth?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(6), pages 1095-1117, Nov.-Dec..
  9. Tirole, Jean, 1985. "Asset Bubbles and Overlapping Generations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(6), pages 1499-1528, November.
  10. Galor, Oded & Ryder, Harl E., 1991. "Dynamic efficiency of steady-state equilibria in an overlapping-generations model with productive capital," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 385-390, April.
  11. Abel, Andrew B., 1989. "Birth, death and taxes," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 1-15, June.
  12. Bullard, James & Russell, Steven, 1999. "An empirically plausible model of low real interest rates and unbacked government debt," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(3), pages 477-508, December.
  13. Edward C. Prescott, 1986. "Theory ahead of business cycle measurement," Staff Report 102, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  14. Cass, David, 1972. "On capital overaccumulation in the aggregative, neoclassical model of economic growth: A complete characterization," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 200-223, April.
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  16. Balasko, Yves & Shell, Karl, 1980. "The overlapping-generations model, I: The case of pure exchange without money," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 281-306, December.
  17. Weil, Philippe, 1989. "Overlapping families of infinitely-lived agents," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 183-198, March.
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  19. Tjalling C. Koopmans, 1963. "On the Concept of Optimal Economic Growth," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 163, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
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