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Ambiguity and Asset Markets

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  • Larry G. Epstein
  • Martin Schneider

Abstract

The Ellsberg paradox suggests that people behave differently in risky situations -- when they are given objective probabilities -- than in ambiguous situations when they are not told the odds (as is typical in financial markets). Such behavior is inconsistent with subjective expected utility theory (SEU), the standard model of choice under uncertainty in financial economics. This article reviews models of ambiguity aversion. It shows that such models -- in particular, the multiple-priors model of Gilboa and Schmeidler -- have implications for portfolio choice and asset pricing that are very different from those of SEU and that help to explain otherwise puzzling features of the data.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 16181.

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Date of creation: Jul 2010
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Publication status: published as Larry G. Epstein & Martin Schneider, 2010. "Ambiguity and Asset Markets," Annual Review of Financial Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 2(1), pages 315-346, December.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16181

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  1. Mukerji, Sujoy & Tallon, Jean-Marc, 2003. "Ellsberg's two-color experiment, portfolio inertia and ambiguity," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(3-4), pages 299-316, June.
  2. Peter Bossaerts & Paolo Ghirardato & Serena Guarnaschelli & William R. Zame, 2006. "Ambiguity in Asset Markets: Theory and Experiment," Carlo Alberto Notebooks 27, Collegio Carlo Alberto, revised 2009.
  3. John Y. Campbell & Luis M. Viceira, 1999. "Consumption And Portfolio Decisions When Expected Returns Are Time Varying," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(2), pages 433-495, May.
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  5. Nicolas Vincent & Isaac Kleshchelski, 2008. "Robust Equilibrium Yield Curves," 2008 Meeting Papers 486, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  6. Pierpaolo Benigno & Salvatore Nistic�, 2012. "International Portfolio Allocation under Model Uncertainty," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(1), pages 144-89, January.
  7. Massimo Guidolin & Francesca Rinaldi, 2009. "A simple model of trading and pricing risky assets under ambiguity: any lessons for policy-makers?," Working Papers 2009-020, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  8. Fabio Trojani & Paolo Vanini, 2004. "Robustness and Ambiguity Aversion in General Equilibrium," Review of Finance, Springer, vol. 8(2), pages 279-324.
  9. Larry G. Epstein & Martin Schneider, 2008. "Ambiguity, Information Quality, and Asset Pricing," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 63(1), pages 197-228, 02.
  10. Klibanoff, Peter & Marinacci, Massimo & Mukerji, Sujoy, 2009. "Recursive smooth ambiguity preferences," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 144(3), pages 930-976, May.
  11. Bryan R. Routledge & Stanley E. Zin, 2001. "Model Uncertainty and Liquidity," NBER Working Papers 8683, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Maccheroni, Fabio & Marinacci, Massimo & Rustichini, Aldo, 2006. "Dynamic variational preferences," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 128(1), pages 4-44, May.
  13. Mukerji, Sujoy & Tallon, Jean-Marc, 2001. "Ambiguity Aversion and Incompleteness of Financial Markets," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 68(4), pages 883-904, October.
  14. Han Ozsoylev & Jan Werner, 2011. "Liquidity and asset prices in rational expectations equilibrium with ambiguous information," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 48(2), pages 469-491, October.
  15. Nengjiu Ju & Jianjun Miao, 2010. "Ambiguity, Learning, and Asset Returns," CEMA Working Papers 438, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.
  16. Epstein, Larry G. & Miao, Jianjun, 2003. "A two-person dynamic equilibrium under ambiguity," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 27(7), pages 1253-1288, May.
  17. David A. Chapman & Valery Polkovnichenko, 2009. "First-Order Risk Aversion, Heterogeneity, and Asset Market Outcomes," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 64(4), pages 1863-1887, 08.
  18. Epstein, Larry G. & Schneider, Martin, 2003. "Recursive multiple-priors," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 113(1), pages 1-31, November.
  19. Patrick Gagliardini & Paolo Porchia & Fabio Trojani, 2009. "Ambiguity Aversion and the Term Structure of Interest Rates," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 22(10), pages 4157-4188, October.
  20. Antonio Mele & Francesco Sangiorgi, 2009. "Ambiguity, information acquisition and price swings in asset markets," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 24424, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  21. Peter Klibanoff & Massimo Marinacci & Sujoy Mukerji, 2005. "A Smooth Model of Decision Making under Ambiguity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 73(6), pages 1849-1892, November.
  22. Larry Epstein & Martin Schneider, 2002. "Learning Under Ambiguity," RCER Working Papers 497, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER), revised Mar 2005.
  23. Trojani, Fabio & Vanini, Paolo, 2002. "A note on robustness in Merton's model of intertemporal consumption and portfolio choice," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 423-435, March.
  24. Thibault Gajdos & Takashi Hayashi & Jean-Marc Tallon & Jean-Christophe Vergnaud, 2006. "Attitude toward imprecise information," Cahiers de la Maison des Sciences Economiques v06081, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1).
  25. Sujoy Mukerji & Jean-Marc Tallon, 2004. "Ambiguity aversion and the absence of indexed debt," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 24(3), pages 665-685, October.
  26. David Easley & Maureen O'Hara, 2009. "Ambiguity and Nonparticipation: The Role of Regulation," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 22(5), pages 1817-1843, May.
  27. David Ahn & Syngjoo Choi & Douglas Gale & Shachar Kariv, 2008. "Estimating Ambiguity Aversion in a Portfolio Choice Experiment," Levine's Working Paper Archive 122247000000001989, David K. Levine.
  28. Sbuelz, Alessandro & Trojani, Fabio, 2008. "Asset prices with locally constrained-entropy recursive multiple-priors utility," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 32(11), pages 3695-3717, November.
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