On Impatience and Policy Effectiveness

Author/Editor:

Silvia Sgherri ; Tamim Bayoumi

Publication Date:

January 1, 2009

Electronic Access:

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Disclaimer: This Working Paper should not be reported as representing the views of the IMF.The views expressed in this Working Paper are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent those of the IMF or IMF policy. Working Papers describe research in progress by the author(s) and are published to elicit comments and to further debate

Summary:

An increasing body of evidence suggests that the behavior of the economy has changed in many fundamental ways over the last decades. In particular, greater financial deregulation, larger wealth accumulation, and better policies might have helped lower uncertainty about future income and lengthen private sectors' planning horizon. In an overlapping-generations model, in which individuals discount the future more rapidly than implied by the market rate of interest, we find indeed evidence of a falling degree of impatience, providing empirical support for this hypothesis. The degree of persistence of "windfall" shocks to disposable income also appears to have varied over time. Shifts of this kind are shown to have a key impact on the average marginal propensity to consume and on the size of policy multipliers.

Series:

Working Paper No. 09/18

Subject:

English

Publication Date:

January 1, 2009

ISBN/ISSN:

9781451871654/1018-5941

Stock No:

WPIEA2009018

Format:

Paper

Pages:

28

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