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Price uncertainty, saving, and welfare

By Diego Nocetti and William T. Smith

Abstract

We analyze how commodity price uncertainty affects saving behavior and welfare in a dynamic model with multiple commodities, portfolio hedging, and a preference structure that disentangles ordinal preferences, attitudes towards risk, and attitudes towards intertemporal substitution. We show that the effect of price uncertainty on savings boils down to knowing (1) hf degree of resistance to intertemporal substitution and (2) the effect that uncertainty has on the certainty-equivalent real interest rate. We also show that, if the certainty-equivalent real interest rate is lower with uncertainty, consumers' welfare is also lower.Price uncertainty Kreps-Porteus preferences Saving Welfare

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