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Euler Equation Errors

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  • Lettau, Martin
  • Ludvigson, Sydney

Abstract

Among the most important pieces of empirical evidence against the standard representative agent, consumption-based asset pricing paradigm are the formidable unconditional Euler equation errors the model produces for cross-sections of asset returns. Here we ask whether calibrated leading asset pricing models - specifically developed to address empirical puzzles associated with the standard paradigm - explain the mispricing of the standard consumption-based model when evaluated on cross-sections of asset returns. We find that, in many cases, they do not. We present several results. First, we show that if the true pricing kernel that sets the unconditional Euler equation errors to zero is jointly lognormally distributed with aggregate consumption and returns, such a kernel will not rationalize the magnitude of the pricing errors generated by the standard model, particularly when the curvature of utility is high. Second, we show that leading asset pricing models also do not explain the significant mispricing of the standard paradigm for plausibly calibrated sets of asset returns, even though in those models the pricing kernel, returns, and consumption are not jointly lognormally distributed. Third, in contrast to the above results, we provide one example of a limited participation/incomplete markets model capable of explaining larger pricing errors for the standard model; but we also find many examples of such models, in which the consumption of marginal assetholders behaves quite differently from per capita aggregate consumption, that do not explain the large Euler equation errors of the standard representative agent model.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 5245.

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Date of creation: Sep 2005
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:5245

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Keywords: consumption CAPM; pricing errors;

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Sydney C. Ludvigson & Martin Lettau, 2005. "Euler Equation Errors," 2005 Meeting Papers 487, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. Sydney Ludvigson, 2008. "The Research Agenda: Sydney Ludvigson on Empirical Evaluation of Economic Theories of Risk Premia," EconomicDynamics Newsletter, Review of Economic Dynamics, vol. 9(2), April.
  3. Howitt, Peter, 2012. "What have central bankers learned from modern macroeconomic theory?," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 11-22.
  4. Ravi Bansal & A. Ronald Gallant & George Tauchen, 2007. "Rational Pessimism, Rational Exuberance, and Asset Pricing Models," NBER Working Papers 13107, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Saziye Gaziog-super-˜lu & Azize Bastıyalı-Hayfavi, 2010. "Stochastic optimization applied to self-financing portfolio: does bequest matter?," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(30), pages 3831-3838.
  6. Anisha Ghosh & George Constantinides, 2008. "Asset Pricing Tests with Long Run Risks in Consumption Growth," FMG Discussion Papers dp609, Financial Markets Group.
  7. Raghu Suryanarayanan, 2006. "Implications of Anticipated Regret and Endogenous Beliefs for Equilibrium Asset Prices: A Theoretical Framework," CSEF Working Papers 162, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.

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