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Determinants of Precautionary Savings : Elasticity of Intertemporal Substitution vs. Risk Aversion

  • Arif Oduncu

The purpose of this paper is to understand the effects of the elasticity of intertemporal substitution (EIS) and risk aversion on savings separately and determine which coefficient is more important factor for precautionary savings. This is an important question since a significant fraction of the capital accumulation is due to precautionary savings according to literature. Thus, knowing the important determinant of precautionary savings will be helpful to understand the capital accumulation mechanism. This paper uses an Epstein-Zin utility function, which permits risk attitudes to be disentangled from the degree of intertemporal substitutability, in the model in order to study the effects of EIS and risk aversion separately. It is shown that saving increases as EIS increases. Similarly, saving increases as the coefficient of risk aversion increases. More importantly, it is observed that EIS is a more important factor for precautionary savings than risk aversion because saving is more responsive to changes in EIS than changes in risk aversion.

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File URL: http://www.tcmb.gov.tr/wps/wcm/connect/TCMB+EN/TCMB+EN/Main+Menu/PUBLICATIONS/Research/Working+Paperss/2012/12-27
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Paper provided by Research and Monetary Policy Department, Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey in its series Working Papers with number 1227.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:tcb:wpaper:1227
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  1. Attanasio, Orazio P & Weber, Guglielmo, 1995. "Is Consumption Growth Consistent with Intertemporal Optimization? Evidence from the Consumer Expenditure Survey," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(6), pages 1121-57, December.
  2. Maurice Obstfeld, 1992. "Risk-Taking, Global Diversification, and Growth," NBER Working Papers 4093, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Weil, Philippe, 1993. "Precautionary Savings and the Permanent Income Hypothesis," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(2), pages 367-83, April.
  4. Masao Ogaki & Qiang Zhang, 2000. "Decreasing Relative Risk Aversion and Tests of Risk Sharing," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 1588, Econometric Society.
  5. Paola Giuliano & Stephen Turnovsky, 2000. "Intertemporal Substitution, Risk Aversion, and Economic Performance in a Stochastically Growing Open Economy," Discussion Papers in Economics at the University of Washington 0002, Department of Economics at the University of Washington.
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  9. Yvon Fauvel & Lucie Samson, 1991. "Intertemporal Substitution and Durable Goods: An Empirical Analysis," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 24(1), pages 192-205, February.
  10. Reinhart, Carmen & Ogaki, Masao, 1995. "Measuring intertemporal substitution: The role of durable goods," MPRA Paper 13690, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  11. Hall, Robert E, 1988. "Intertemporal Substitution in Consumption," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(2), pages 339-57, April.
  12. Epstein, Larry G & Zin, Stanley E, 1989. "Substitution, Risk Aversion, and the Temporal Behavior of Consumption and Asset Returns: A Theoretical Framework," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(4), pages 937-69, July.
  13. Deaton, Angus, 1991. "Saving and Liquidity Constraints," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(5), pages 1221-48, September.
  14. Jonathan S. Skinner, 1987. "Risky Income, Life Cycle Consumption, and Precautionary Savings," NBER Working Papers 2336, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  18. van der Ploeg, Frederick, 1993. "A Closed-Form Solution for a Model of Precautionary Saving," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(2), pages 385-95, April.
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  23. repec:fth:harver:1435 is not listed on IDEAS
  24. Attanasio, Orazio P & Weber, Guglielmo, 1993. "Consumption Growth, the Interest Rate and Aggregation," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(3), pages 631-49, July.
  25. Runkle, David E., 1991. "Liquidity constraints and the permanent-income hypothesis : Evidence from panel data," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 73-98, February.
  26. Hall, Robert E, 1978. "Stochastic Implications of the Life Cycle-Permanent Income Hypothesis: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(6), pages 971-87, December.
  27. N. Gregory Mankiw & Julio J. Rotemberg & Lawrence H. Summers, 1982. "Intertemporal Substitution in Macroeconomics," NBER Working Papers 0898, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  28. Brock, William A. & Mirman, Leonard J., 1972. "Optimal economic growth and uncertainty: The discounted case," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(3), pages 479-513, June.
  29. Santanu Chatterjee & Paola Giuliano & Stephen J. Turnovsky, 2004. "Capital Income Taxes and Growth in a Stochastic Economy: A Numerical Analysis of the Role of Risk Aversion and Intertemporal Substitution," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 6(2), pages 277-310, 05.
  30. Fauvel, Y. & Samson, L., 1989. "Intertemporal Substitution And Durable Goods: An Empircal Analysis," Cahiers de recherche 8916, Université Laval - Département d'économique.
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