Time preference and the importance of saving for retirement

Michael S. Finke, Sandra J. Huston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

18 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study models the importance respondents place on saving for retirement as a function of time preference using a sample of 6812 undergraduate and graduate students. Individual time preference is measured by comparing dollar values over time and through a combination of intertemporal behaviors that may be the most theoretically appropriate measurement of the discount rate for utility over time. Results show strong correlations among decision making domains that involve time discounting. Time preference measured by comparing dollar amounts across time proves a much weaker predictor than a combination of intertemporal behaviors measured either as a linear scale or as factors. In multivariate models, a factor of intertemporal preventive health behaviors is a stronger predictor of the importance of saving for retirement than all other explanatory variables including age, race, parental income, gender, GPA, and college major.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-34
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Economic Behavior and Organization
Volume89
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2013

Keywords

  • Retirement saving
  • Time discounting
  • Time preference

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