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Victor Aguiar, U of Western Ontario Print
Tuesday, 30 April 2019, 14:00 - 15:15

Victor Aguiar, University of Western Ontario

Stochastic Revealed Preferences with Measurement Error

Abstract : A long-standing question about consumer behavior is whether individuals' observed purchase decisions satisfy the revealed preference (RP) axioms of the utility maximization theory (UMT). Researchers using survey or experimental panel data sets on prices and consumption to answer this question face the well-known problem of measurement error. We show that ignoring measurement error in the RP approach may lead to overrejection of the UMT. To solve this problem, this paper proposes a new statistical RP framework for consumption panel data sets that allows for testing the UMT in the presence of measurement error. Our test is applicable to all consumer models that can be characterized by their first-order conditions. Our approach is nonparametric, allows for unrestricted heterogeneity in preferences, and requires only a centering condition on measurement error.

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