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Seasonally Varying Preferences: Theoretical Foundations for an Empirical Regularity


  • Mark J. Kamstra
  • Lisa A. Kramer
  • Maurice D. Levi
  • Tan Wang


We investigate an asset pricing model with preferences cycling between high risk aversion and low EIS in fall/winter and the reverse in spring/summer. Calibrating to consumption data and allowing plausible preference parameter values, we produce returns that match observed equity and Treasury returns across the seasons: risky returns are higher and risk-free returns are lower or stable in fall/winter, and they reverse in spring/summer. Further, risky returns vary more than risk-free returns. A novel finding is that both EIS and risk aversion must vary seasonally to match observed returns. Further, the degree of necessary seasonal change in EIS is small.

Suggested Citation

  • Mark J. Kamstra & Lisa A. Kramer & Maurice D. Levi & Tan Wang, 2014. "Seasonally Varying Preferences: Theoretical Foundations for an Empirical Regularity," Review of Asset Pricing Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 4(1), pages 39-77.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:rasset:v:4:y:2014:i:1:p:39-77.

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    Cited by:

    1. Bourdeau-Brien, Michael & Kryzanowski, Lawrence, 2020. "Natural disasters and risk aversion," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 177(C), pages 818-835.
    2. Li, Fengyun & Zhang, Huacheng & Zheng, Dazhi, 2018. "Seasonality in the cross section of stock returns: Advanced markets versus emerging markets," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 263-281.
    3. Guy Kaplanski & Haim Levy, 2017. "Seasonality in Perceived Risk: A Sentiment Effect," Quarterly Journal of Finance (QJF), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 7(01), pages 1-21, March.
    4. Berrada, Tony & Detemple, Jérôme & Rindisbacher, Marcel, 2018. "Asset pricing with beliefs-dependent risk aversion and learning," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 128(3), pages 504-534.
    5. Qadan, Mahmoud & Aharon, David Y., 2019. "How much happiness can we find in the U.S. fear Index?," Finance Research Letters, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 246-258.
    6. Finta, Marinela Adriana, 2021. "Japanese monetary policy and its impact on stock market implied volatility during pleasant and unpleasant weather," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 67(C).

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates


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