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|Title: ||Consumption Euler Equation: The Theoretical and Practical Roles of Higher-Order Moments|
consumption Euler equation
|Issue Date: ||2009-09-18 14:15:26 (UTC+8)|
高階動差的引入，除了降低近似偏誤外，卻也必須付出估計效率降低的代價。我們因此並不建議無限制地放入高階動差。則近似階次選取，乃為攸關估計績效的重要因素。本章的第二部份，即著眼於該最適近似階次選取。我們首先定義使參數估計均方誤(mean squared error, MSE)為最小的近似階次，為最適近似階次。我們發現，該最適階次與樣本大小、效用函數的彎曲程度都有直接的關係。
本論文的最後一章，則旨在理論上建立高階動差的重要性。我們在二次式的效用函數(quadratic utility function)設定下，推導借貸限制下的最適消費決策。二次式的效用函數，由於其邊際價值函數(marginal value function)為一線性函數，因此所隱涵的消費決策，具有確定相等(certainty equivalence)的特性。這表示消費者只關心未來的期望消費水準，二階以上的更高階動差，都不影響其消費決策。然而這種確定相等的特性，將因為借貸限制的存在而不復存在，而高階動差的重要性也就因此凸顯。
The theme of this thesis seeks to explore the importance of higher-order moments in the consumption Euler equation, both theoretically and empirically. Applying log-linearized versions of Euler equations has been a dominant approach to obtaining sensible analytical solutions, and a popular choice of model specifications for estimation. The literature however by now has been no lack of conflicting empirical results that are attributed to the use of the specific version of Euler equations. Important yet natural questions whether the higher-order moments can be safely ignored, or whether higher-order approximations offer explanations to the stylized facts remain unanswered. Such inquires as in the thesis thus can improve our understanding toward consumer behaviors over prior studies based on the linear approximation.
1. What Do We Gain from Estimating Euler Equations with Higher-Order Approximations?
Despite the importance of estimating structural parameters governing consumption dynamics, such as the elasticity of intertemporal substitution, empirical attempts to unveil these parameters using a log-linearized version of the Euler equation have produced many puzzling results. Some studies show that the approximation bias may well constitute a compelling explanation. Even so, the approximation technique continues to be useful and convenient in estimation of the parameters, because noisy consumption data renders a full-fledged GMM estimation unreliable. Motivated by its potential success in reducing the bias, we investigate the economic significance and empirical relevance of higher-order approximations to the Euler equation with simulation methodology. The higher-order approximations suggest a linear relationship between expected consumption growth and its higher-order moments. Our simulation results clearly reveal that the approximation bias can be significantly reduced when the higher-order moments are introduced into estimation, but at the cost of efficiency loss. It therefore documents a clear tradeoff between approximation bias reduction and efficiency loss in the consumption growth regression when higher-order approximations to the Euler equation is considered. A question of immediate practical interest arises ``How many higher-order terms are needed?'' The second part of our Monte-Carlo studies then deals with this issue. We judge whether a particular consumption moment should be included in the regression by the criterion of mean squared errors (MSE) that accounts for a trade-off between estimation bias and efficiency loss. The included moments leading to smaller MSE are regarded as ones to be needed. We also investigate the usefulness of the model and/or moment selection criteria in providing guidance in selecting the approximation order. We find that improvements over the second-order approximated Euler equation can always be achieved simply by allowing for the higher-order moments in the consumption regression, with the approximation order selected by these criteria.
2. Uncovering Preference Parameters with the Utilization of Relations between Higher-Order Consumption Moments
Our previous attempt to deliver more desirable estimation performance with higher-order approximations to the consumption Euler equation reveals that the approximation bias can be significantly reduced when the higher-order moments are introduced into estimation, but at the cost of efficiency loss. The latter results from the difficulty in identifying independent variation in the higher-order moments by sets of linear instruments used to identify that in variability in consumption growth, mainly consisting of individual-specific characteristics. Thus, one major challenge in the study is how to obtain quality instruments that are capable of doing so. With the numerical analysis technique, we first establish the nonlinear equilibrium relation between consumption risk and higher-order consumption moments. This nonlinear relation is then utilized to form quality instruments that can better capture variations in higher-order moments. A novelty of this chapter lies in adopting a set of nonlinear instruments that is to cope with this issue. They are very simple moment transformations of the characteristic-related instruments, thereby easy to obtain in practice. As expected, our simulations demonstrate that for a comparable amount of the bias corrected, applying the nonlinear instruments does entail an inclusion of fewer higher-order moments in estimation. A smaller simulated MSE that reveals the improvement over our previous estimation results can thus be achieved.\
3. Precautionary Saving and Consumption with Borrowing Constraint
This last chapter offers a theoretical underpinning for the importance of the higher-order moments in a simple environment where economic agents have a quadratic-utility preference. The resulting Euler equation gives rise to a linear policy function in essence, or a random-walk consumption rule. The twist in our theory comes from a presence of borrowing constraint facing consumers. The analysis shows that the presence of the constraint induces precautionary motives for saving as responses from consumers to income uncertainties, even there has been no such motives inherent in consumers' preference. The corresponding value function now displays a convexity property that is virtually only associated with more general preferences than a quadratic utility. The analytical framework allows us to be able to characterize saving behaviors that are of precautionary motives, and their responses to changes in different moments of income process. As empirical implications, our analysis shed new light on the causes of excess sensitivity, the consequences of sample splitting between the rich and the poor, as well as the relevance of the higher-order moments to consumption dynamics, specifically skewness and kurtosis.
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|Source URI: ||http://thesis.lib.nccu.edu.tw/record/#G0893515021|
|Data Type: ||thesis|
|Appears in Collections:||[國際經營與貿易學系 ] 學位論文|
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