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Ambiguity aversion, asset prices, and the welfare costs of aggregate fluctuations

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  • Alonso, Irasema
  • Prado, Mauricio

Abstract

Under the hypothesis that aggregate U.S. consumption is random and, more importantly, viewed as ambiguous by consumers, we examine the implications for asset prices and for how consumption fluctuations influence consumer welfare. We consider a simple, Mehra–Prescott-style endowment economy with a representative agent facing consumption fluctuations calibrated to match U.S. data from 1889 to 2008. Our experiment is to restrict preference parameters in order to as well as possible match some asset-price facts—the average returns on equity and a short-term risk-free bond—and then compute the welfare benefits of removing all consumption fluctuations given those parameters. These benefits turn out to be quite large: consumers are willing to pay about 10% of consumption in permanent terms under our benchmark calibration.

Suggested Citation

  • Alonso, Irasema & Prado, Mauricio, 2015. "Ambiguity aversion, asset prices, and the welfare costs of aggregate fluctuations," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 78-92.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:dyncon:v:51:y:2015:i:c:p:78-92
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jedc.2014.09.039
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. HIGASHIDA Keisaku & TANAKA Kenta & MANAGI Shunsuke, 2018. "Losses on Asset Returns Caused by Perception Gaps of Fundamental Values: Evidence from laboratory experiments," Discussion papers 18008, Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Ambiguity aversion; Equity premium; Consumption fluctuations;

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles

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