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Global and Approximate Global Optimality of Myopic Economic Decisions

  • Economics
  • Mathematics


In actual problem contexts, the time horizon over which plans are formulated must generally be short in relation to the history of the process as a whole. What loss of return is entailed by the use of these relatively short planning horizons? This article develops a general discrete-time dynamic stochastic control model that encompasses many well-known economic models. It derives sufficient conditions in this context for the equivalence of myopic (single period) and global (simultaneous multiple period) expected return maximization, and it provides a bound for the loss in global return when these conditions are not met. It also identifies properties of proxy short-horizon return functions which can be used to partially order them in terms of overall expected return performance. Annotated pointers to related work can be accessed here:

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