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Evolution of time preference by natural selection: comment

Robson, Arthur J. and Szentes, Balázs (2008) Evolution of time preference by natural selection: comment. American Economic Review, 98 (3). pp. 1178-1188. ISSN 0002-8282

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Identification Number: 10.1257/aer.98.3.1178


We reexamine Alan R. Rogers' (1994) analysis of the biological basis of the rate of time preference. Although his basic insight concerning the derivation of the utility function holds up, the functional form he uses does not generate equilibrium evolutionary behavior. Moreover, Rogers relies upon an interior solution for a particular kind of intergenerational transfer. We show such interior solutions need not generally arise. Hence Rogers most striking prediction, namely that the real interest rate should be about 2 percent per annum, does not follow.

Item Type: Article
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Additional Information: © 2008 AEA
Divisions: Economics
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
JEL classification: D - Microeconomics > D1 - Household Behavior and Family Economics > D11 - Consumer Economics: Theory
D - Microeconomics > D9 - Intertemporal Choice and Growth > D91 - Intertemporal Consumer Choice; Life Cycle Models and Saving
Date Deposited: 14 May 2013 15:05
Last Modified: 01 Jul 2024 21:54

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