Discounting, Self-Control, and Saving

Authored by: Ellen K. Nyhus , Paul Webley

Handbook of Contemporary Behavioral Economics

Print publication date:  July  2006
Online publication date:  January  2015

Print ISBN: 9780765613028
eBook ISBN: 9781315703879
Adobe ISBN: 9781317469162


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Establishing the causes of saving has occupied scholars since Aristotle (384–322 b.c.), who considered whether the accumulation of wealth was laudable or objectionable. In the two past centuries in particular, household saving has been subject to extensive theoretical and empirical research. This is due, in part, to its increasing importance for national economies. In spite of this we only have a partial understanding of households’ motivations for saving. We know some variables that might be used as predictors for household saving, such as income and age, but the underlying psychological processes governing the choice between saving and spending are still not well understood.

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