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Das House-Kapital: A Theory of Wealth-to-Income Ratios

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  • Steger, Thomas Michael
  • Grossmann, Volker

Abstract

This paper presents a novel dynamic general equilibrium model to examine the evolution of two major wealth-to-income ratios - housing wealth and non-residential wealth - in advanced countries since WWII. Our theory rests on three premises: (1) the overall land endowment is fixed; (2) the production of new houses requires land as an essential input; (3) land employed for real estate development must be permanently withdrawn from alternative uses. The model distinguishes, for the first time, between the extensive and the intensive margin of housing production. The calibrated model replicates the post WWII increase in the two major wealth-to-income ratios. It also suggests a moderate further increase in wealth-to-income ratios that is associated with a considerable future surge in land prices and house prices. Higher population density and technological progress do, however, not affect long run wealth-to-income ratios. The model also accounts for the close connection of house prices to land prices in the data.

Suggested Citation

  • Steger, Thomas Michael & Grossmann, Volker, 2016. "Das House-Kapital: A Theory of Wealth-to-Income Ratios," VfS Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145936, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:vfsc16:145936
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    Cited by:

    1. Marius Brülhart & Didier Dupertuis & Elodie Moreau, 2018. "Inheritance flows in Switzerland, 1911–2011," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics, Springer;Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics, vol. 154(1), pages 1-13, December.
    2. Miles, David K & Sefton, James, 2017. "Houses across time and across place," CEPR Discussion Papers 12103, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Angeliki Skoura, 2019. "Detection of Lead-Lag Relationships Using Both Time Domain and Time-Frequency Domain; An Application to Wealth-To-Income Ratio," Economies, MDPI, vol. 7(2), pages 1-27, April.
    4. Andreas Irmen & Amer Tabakovic, 2016. "Factor Income Distribution and Endogenous Economic Growth - When Piketty meets Romer -," DEM Discussion Paper Series 16-18, Department of Economics at the University of Luxembourg.
    5. Borri, Nicola & Reichlin, Pietro, 2018. "The housing cost disease," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 106-123.
    6. Odran Bonnet & Guillaume Flamerie de la Chapelle & Alain Trannoy & Etienne Wasmer, 2019. "Secular Trends in Wealth and Heterogeneous Capital: Land is Back... and Should Be Taxed," Working Papers hal-03570837, HAL.
    7. Grossmann, Volker & Schäfer, Andreas & Steger, Thomas & Fuchs, Benjamin, 2017. "Reversal of migration flows: A fresh look at the German reunification," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 109(C), pages 1-15.
    8. Luigi Bonatti, 2017. "Land, Housing, Growth and Inequality," DEM Working Papers 2017/01, Department of Economics and Management.
    9. Odran Bonnet, 2018. "Individual housing choices and aggregate housing prices: discrete choice models revisited with matching models," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/3bhpicpe2q8, Sciences Po.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E10 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models - - - General
    • E20 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - General (includes Measurement and Data)
    • O40 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General

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