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Noise Trader Risk in Financial Markets

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  • De Long, J. Bradford
  • Shleifer, Andrei
  • Summers, Lawrence H.
  • Waldmann, Robert J.

Abstract

We present a simple overlapping generations model of an asset market in which irrational noise traders with erroneous stochastic beliefs both affect prices and earn higher expected returns. The unpredictability of noise traders' beliefs creates a risk in the price of the asset that deters rational arbitrageurs from aggressively betting against them. As a result, prices can diverge significantly from fundamental values even in the absence of fundamental risk. Moreover, bearing a disproportionate amount of risk that they themselves create enables noise traders to earn a higher expected return than rational investors do. The model sheds light on a number of financial anomalies, including the excess volatility of asset prices, the mean reversion of stock returns, the underpricing of closed-end mutual funds, and the Mehra-Prescott equity premium puzzle.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Harvard University Department of Economics in its series Scholarly Articles with number 3725552.

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Date of creation: 1990
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Publication status: Published in Journal of Political Economy -Chicago-
Handle: RePEc:hrv:faseco:3725552

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  1. J. Bradford De Long & Andrei Shleifer & Lawrence H. Summers & Robert J. Waldmann, 1989. "Positive Feedback Investment Strategies and Destabilizing Rational Speculation," NBER Working Papers 2880, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Brickley, James A. & Schallheim, James S., 1985. "Lifting the Lid on Closed-End Investment Companies: A Case of Abnormal Returns," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 20(01), pages 107-117, March.
  3. N. Gregory Mankiw, 1986. "The Term Structure of Interest Rates Revisited," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 17(1), pages 61-110.
  4. Milgrom, Paul & Stokey, Nancy, 1982. "Information, trade and common knowledge," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 17-27, February.
  5. Poterba, James M. & Summers, Lawrence H., 1988. "Mean reversion in stock prices : Evidence and Implications," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 27-59, October.
  6. Stein, Jeremy C, 1987. "Informational Externalities and Welfare-Reducing Speculation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(6), pages 1123-45, December.
  7. J. Bradford De Long & Andrei Shleifer & Lawrence H. Summers & Robert J. Waldmann,, . "The Survival of Noise Traders in Financial Markets," J. Bradford De Long's Working Papers _123, University of California at Berkeley, Economics Department.
  8. John Y. Campbell & Albert S. Kyle, 1988. "Smart Money, Noise Trading and Stock Price Behavior," NBER Technical Working Papers 0071, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Bray, Margaret, 1982. "Learning, estimation, and the stability of rational expectations," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 318-339, April.
  10. Fama, Eugene F & French, Kenneth R, 1988. "Permanent and Temporary Components of Stock Prices," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(2), pages 246-73, April.
  11. Robert J. Shiller, 1984. "Stock Prices and Social Dynamics," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 719R, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  12. Grossman, Sanford J & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1980. "On the Impossibility of Informationally Efficient Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(3), pages 393-408, June.
  13. Summers, Lawrence H, 1986. " Does the Stock Market Rationally Reflect Fundamental Values?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 41(3), pages 591-601, July.
  14. De Long, J. Bradford & Shleifer, Andrei & Summers, Lawrence H. & Waldmann, Robert J., 1990. "Noise Trader Risk in Financial Markets," Scholarly Articles 3725552, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  15. Russell, Thomas & Thaler, Richard, 1985. "The Relevance of Quasi Rationality in Competitive Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(5), pages 1071-82, December.
  16. Kyle, Albert S, 1985. "Continuous Auctions and Insider Trading," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(6), pages 1315-35, November.
  17. Paul A. Samuelson, 1958. "An Exact Consumption-Loan Model of Interest with or without the Social Contrivance of Money," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 66, pages 467.
  18. J. Bradford De Long & Andrei Shleifer & Lawrence H. Summers & Robert J. Waldmann, 1989. "The Size and Incidence of the Losses from Noise Trading," NBER Working Papers 2875, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Townsend, Robert M, 1983. "Forecasting the Forecasts of Others," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(4), pages 546-88, August.
  20. John Haltiwanger & Michael Waldman, 1985. "Rational Expectations in the Aggregate," UCLA Economics Working Papers 327, UCLA Department of Economics.
  21. Roll, Richard, 1984. "Orange Juice and Weather," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(5), pages 861-80, December.
  22. J. Bradford De Long & Andrei Shleifer & Lawrence H. Summers & Robert J. Waldmann, . "The Size and Incidence of Losses from Noise Trading," J. Bradford De Long's Working Papers _128, University of California at Berkeley, Economics Department.
  23. Shiller, Robert J, 1981. "Do Stock Prices Move Too Much to be Justified by Subsequent Changes in Dividends?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(3), pages 421-36, June.
  24. R. Mehra & E. Prescott, 2010. "The equity premium: a puzzle," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1401, David K. Levine.
  25. Jensen, Michael C, 1986. "Agency Costs of Free Cash Flow, Corporate Finance, and Takeovers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(2), pages 323-29, May.
  26. Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 1988. "Dividend yields and expected stock returns," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-25, October.
  27. Denton, Frank T, 1985. "The Effect of Professional Advice on the Stability of a Speculative Market," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(5), pages 977-93, October.
  28. N. Gregory Mankiw & Lawrence H. Summers, 1987. "Do Long-Term Interest Rates Overreact to Short-Term Interest Rates?," NBER Working Papers 1345, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  29. Hart, Oliver D & Kreps, David M, 1986. "Price Destabilizing Speculation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(5), pages 927-52, October.
  30. Robert J. Shiller, 1984. "Stock Prices and Social Dynamics," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 15(2), pages 457-510.
  31. Ingram, Beth Fisher, 1990. "Equilibrium Modeling of Asset Prices: Rationality versus Rules of Thumb," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 8(1), pages 115-25, January.
  32. Figlewski, Stephen, 1979. "Subjective Information and Market Efficiency in a Betting Market," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(1), pages 75-88, February.
  33. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1990. "Equilibrium Short Horizons of Investors and Firms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 148-53, May.
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