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The Endogenous Determination of Time Preference

Gary S. Becker and Casey B. Mulligan
The Quarterly Journal of Economics
Vol. 112, No. 3 (Aug., 1997), pp. 729-758
Published by: Oxford University Press
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2951254
Page Count: 30
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Abstract

We model a consumer's efforts to reduce the discount on future utilities. Our analysis shows how wealth, mortality, addictions, uncertainty, and other variables affect the degree of time preference. In addition to working out many implications of the model, we discuss evidence on consumption, savings, equilibrium, and the dynamics of inequality. We claim that most of that evidence is consistent with the predictions of our approach.

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