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An Escape Time Interpretation of Robust Control

This paper studies the problem of an agent who wants to prevent the state from exceeding a critical threshold. Even though the agent is presumed to know the model, the optimal policy is computed by solving a conventional robust control problem. That is, robustness is induced here by objectives rather than uncertainty, and so is an example of the duality between risk-sensitivity and robustness. However, here the agent only incurs costs upon escape to a critical region, not during ‘normal times’. We argue this is often a more realistic model of macroeconomic policymaking.

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File URL: http://www.sfu.ca/econ-research/RePEc/sfu/sfudps/dp13-07.pdf
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Paper provided by Department of Economics, Simon Fraser University in its series Discussion Papers with number dp13-07.

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Length: 13
Date of creation: May 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:sfu:sfudps:dp13-07
Contact details of provider: Postal: Department of Economics, Simon Fraser University, 8888 University Drive, Burnaby, BC, V5A 1S6, Canada
Phone: (778)782-3508
Fax: (778)782-5944
Web page: http://www.sfu.ca/economics.html

More information through EDIRC

Order Information: Postal: Working Paper Coordinator, Department of Economics, Simon Fraser University, 8888 University Drive, Burnaby, BC, V5A 1S6, Canada
Web: http://www.sfu.ca/economics/research/publications.html Email:


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  1. Jianjun Miao & Neng Wang, 2010. "Risk, uncertainty,and option exercise," Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series WP2010-029, Boston University - Department of Economics.
  2. Pascal J. Maenhout, 2004. "Robust Portfolio Rules and Asset Pricing," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 17(4), pages 951-983.
  3. Tomasz Strzalecki, . "Axiomatic Foundations of Multiplier Preferences," Working Paper 8239, Harvard University OpenScholar.
  4. Dutta, Prajit K & Radner, Roy, 1999. "Profit Maximization and the Market Selection Hypothesis," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 66(4), pages 769-98, October.
  5. Thomas J. Sargent & Riccardo Colacito & Lars P. Hansen & Timothy Cogley, 2008. "Robustness and US Monetary," 2008 Meeting Papers 228, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  6. Kolyuzhnov, Dmitri & Bogomolova, Anna & Slobodyan, Sergey, 2014. "Escape dynamics: A continuous-time approximation," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 161-183.
  7. Anderson, Evan W. & Hansen, Lars Peter & Sargent, Thomas J., 2012. "Small noise methods for risk-sensitive/robust economies," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 468-500.
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