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Computational aspects of prospect theory with asset pricing applications

  • Enrico Giorgi

    ()

  • Thorsten Hens

    ()

  • János Mayer

    ()

We develop an algorithm to compute asset allocations for Kahneman and Tversky’s (Econometrica, 47(2), 263–291, 1979) prospect theory. An application to benchmark data as in Fama and French (Journal of Financial Economics, 47(2), 427–465, 1992) shows that the equity premium puzzle is resolved for parameter values similar to those found in the laboratory experiments of Kahneman and Tversky (Econometrica, 47(2), 263–291, 1979). While previous studies like Benartzi and Thaler (The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 110(1), 73–92, 1995), Barberis, Huang and Santos (The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 116(1), 1–53, 2001), and Grüne and Semmler (Asset prices and loss aversion, Germany, Mimeo Bielefeld University, 2005) focussed on dynamic aspects of asset pricing but only used loss aversion to explain the equity premium puzzle our paper explains the unconditional moments of asset pricing by a static two-period optimization problem. However, we incorporate asymmetric risk aversion. Our approach allows reducing the degree of loss aversion from 2.353 to 2.25, which is the value found by Tversky and Kahneman (Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, 5, 297–323, 1992) while increasing the risk aversion from 1 to 0.894, which is a slightly higher value than the 0.88 found by Tversky and Kahneman (Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, 5, 297–323, 1992). The equivalence of these parameter settings is robust to incorporating the size and the value portfolios of Fama and French (Journal of Finance, 47(2), 427–465, 1992). However, the optimal prospect theory portfolios found on this larger set of assets differ drastically from the optimal mean-variance portfolio. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

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Article provided by Society for Computational Economics in its journal Computational Economics.

Volume (Year): 29 (2007)
Issue (Month): 3 (May)
Pages: 267-281

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Handle: RePEc:kap:compec:v:29:y:2007:i:3:p:267-281
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  1. Monika Piazzesi & Martin Schneider & Selale Tuzel, 2004. "Housing, Consumption and Asset Pricing," 2004 Meeting Papers 357c, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. Lars Grune & Willi Semmler, 2003. "Solving Asset Pricing Models with Stochastic Dynamic Programming," Computing in Economics and Finance 2003 54, Society for Computational Economics.
  3. Nicholas BARBERIS & Ming HUANG & Tano SANTOS, 2000. "Prospect Theory and Asset Prices," FAME Research Paper Series rp16, International Center for Financial Asset Management and Engineering.
  4. Lars Peter Hansen & Ravi Jagannathan, 1990. "Implications of Security Market Data for Models of Dynamic Economies," NBER Technical Working Papers 0089, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Rajnish Mehra, 2006. "The Equity Premium in India," NBER Working Papers 12434, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Willi Semmler & Lars Grüne, 2005. "Asset Pricing and Loss Aversion," Computing in Economics and Finance 2005 199, Society for Computational Economics.
  7. Benartzi, Shlomo & Thaler, Richard H, 1995. "Myopic Loss Aversion and the Equity Premium Puzzle," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(1), pages 73-92, February.
  8. George M. Constantinides & John B. Donaldson & Rajnish Mehra, 2005. "Junior is Rich: Bequests as Consumption," NBER Working Papers 11122, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Sydney Ludvigson & Martin Lettau, 1999. "Consumption, aggregate wealth and expected stock returns," Staff Reports 77, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  10. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1978. "Asset Prices in an Exchange Economy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(6), pages 1429-45, November.
  11. R. Mehra & E. Prescott, 2010. "The equity premium: a puzzle," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1401, David K. Levine.
  12. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-91, March.
  13. Constantinides, George M, 1990. "Habit Formation: A Resolution of the Equity Premium Puzzle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(3), pages 519-43, June.
  14. Rubinstein, R. Y., 1982. "Generating random vectors uniformly distributed inside and on the surface of different regions," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 205-209, June.
  15. Fama, Eugene F & French, Kenneth R, 1992. " The Cross-Section of Expected Stock Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(2), pages 427-65, June.
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