IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Mirror utility functions and reflexion properties of various classes of goods

  • Peter Moffatt

    (School of Economics, University of East Anglia)

  • Keith Moffatt

    (Trinity College, Cambridge)

Registered author(s):

    Any 2-good direct utility function satisfying standard axioms may be transformed into an indirect utility function, also satisfying standard axioms, by a straightforward change of sign. The reverse is also true. We shall refer to one such function as the `mirror' of the other. It is sometimes the case that the demand function for one of the goods, arising from one utility function, exhibits a particular feature if and only if the mirror utility function exhibits the same feature for the other good. When this occurs, we say that the demand feature in question has the `reflexion property'. It is shown that Giffen behaviour and the necessity/luxury dichotomy are two features of demand that do have this reflexion property. However, it is also shown that the normality/inferiority dichotomy is one feature that does not.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Paper provided by School of Economics, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK. in its series University of East Anglia Applied and Financial Economics Working Paper Series with number 031.

    in new window

    Date of creation: 11 Nov 2011
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:uea:aepppr:2011_31
    Contact details of provider: Postal: Norwich NR4 7TI
    Phone: 44 1603 591131
    Fax: +44(0)1603 4562592
    Web page:

    More information through EDIRC

    Order Information: Postal: Helen Chapman, School of Economics, University of East Anglia, Norwich Research Park, Norwich, NR4 7TJ, UK

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    as in new window
    1. John K.H. Quah, 2003. "The Law of Demand and Risk Aversion," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(2), pages 713-721, March.
    2. Moffatt, Peter G., 2002. "Is Giffen behaviour compatible with the axioms of consumer theory?," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(4), pages 259-267, July.
    3. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521314985 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Weber, Christian E, 2001. "A Production Function with an Inferior Input: Comment," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 69(6), pages 616-22, December.
    5. Christian E. Weber, 1997. "The Case of a Giffen Good: Comment," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 28(1), pages 36-44, March.
    6. Quah, J-K-H, 1996. "The Monotonicity of Individual and Market Demand," Economics Papers 127, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
    7. Junko Doi & Kazumichi Iwasa & Koji Shimomura, 2009. "Giffen behavior independent of the wealth level," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 41(2), pages 247-267, November.
    8. Kohli, Ulrich, 1985. "Inverse demand and anti-giffen goods," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 397-404.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:uea:aepppr:2011_31. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Alasdair Brown)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.