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Evolution of time preference by natural selection: comment

Robson, A.; Szentes, B.; (2008) Evolution of time preference by natural selection: comment. American Economic Review , 98 (3) pp. 1178-1188. 10.1257/aer.98.3.1178.

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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.

Type: Article
Title: Evolution of time preference by natural selection: comment
DOI: 10.1257/aer.98.3.1178
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1257/aer.98.3.1178
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of SandHS > Dept of Economics
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/17378
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