IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/oup/rfinst/v23y2010i4p1325-1359.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Ambiguity in Asset Markets: Theory and Experiment

Author

Listed:
  • Peter Bossaerts
  • Paolo Ghirardato
  • Serena Guarnaschelli
  • William R. Zame

Abstract

This paper studies the impact of ambiguity and ambiguity aversion on equilibrium asset prices and portfolio holdings in competitive financial markets. It argues that attitudes toward ambiguity are heterogeneous across the population, just as attitudes toward risk are heterogeneous across the population, but that heterogeneity of attitudes toward ambiguity has different implications than heterogeneity of attitudes toward risk. In pa rticular, when some state probabilities are not known, agents who are sufficiently ambiguity averse find open sets of prices for which they refuse to hold an ambiguous portfolio. This suggests a different cross section of portfolio choices, a wider range of state price/probability ratios, and different rankings of state price/probability ratios than would be predicted if state probabilities were known. Experiments confirm all of these suggestions. Our findings contradict the claim that investors who have cognitive biases do not affect prices because they are inframarginal: ambiguity-averse investors have an indirect effect on prices because they change the per capita amount of risk that is to be shared among the marginal investors. Our experimental data also suggest a positive correlation between risk aversion and ambiguity aversion that might explain the "value effect" in historical data. The Author 2010 Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Society for Financial Studies. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oxfordjournals.org., Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Peter Bossaerts & Paolo Ghirardato & Serena Guarnaschelli & William R. Zame, 2010. "Ambiguity in Asset Markets: Theory and Experiment," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 23(4), pages 1325-1359, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:rfinst:v:23:y:2010:i:4:p:1325-1359
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1093/rfs/hhp106
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Fama, Eugene F & French, Kenneth R, 1992. "The Cross-Section of Expected Stock Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(2), pages 427-465, June.
    2. repec:dau:papers:123456789/5393 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Peter Bossaerts & Charles Plott, 2004. "Basic Principles of Asset Pricing Theory: Evidence from Large-Scale Experimental Financial Markets," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 8(2), pages 135-169.
    4. Peter Bossaerts & Charles Plott & William R. Zame, 2005. "Prices and Portfolio Choices in Financial Markets: Theory and Experiments," UCLA Economics Working Papers 840, UCLA Department of Economics.
    5. Marco Cagetti & Lars Peter Hansen & Thomas Sargent & Noah Williams, 2002. "Robustness and Pricing with Uncertain Growth," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 15(2), pages 363-404, March.
    6. Raman Uppal & Tan Wang, 2003. "Model Misspecification and Underdiversification," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 58(6), pages 2465-2486, December.
    7. Brian D. Kluger & Steve B. Wyatt, 2004. "Are Judgment Errors Reflected in Market Prices and Allocations? Experimental Evidence Based on the Monty Hall Problem," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(3), pages 969-998, June.
    8. Uri Gneezy & Arie Kapteyn & Jan Potters, 2003. "Evaluation Periods and Asset Prices in a Market Experiment," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 58(2), pages 821-838, April.
    9. Ghirardato, Paolo & Maccheroni, Fabio & Marinacci, Massimo, 2004. "Differentiating ambiguity and ambiguity attitude," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 118(2), pages 133-173, October.
    10. Gilboa, Itzhak & Schmeidler, David, 1989. "Maxmin expected utility with non-unique prior," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 141-153, April.
    11. 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.
    12. Epstein, Larry G & Wang, Tan, 1994. "Intertemporal Asset Pricing Under Knightian Uncertainty," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 62(2), pages 283-322, March.
    13. Rose-Anne Dana, 2004. "Ambiguity, uncertainty aversion and equilibrium welfare," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 23(3), pages 569-587, March.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Gonçalo Faria & João Correia-da-Silva, 2012. "The price of risk and ambiguity in an intertemporal general equilibrium model of asset prices," Annals of Finance, Springer, vol. 8(4), pages 507-531, November.
    2. Ulrich, Maxim, 2013. "Inflation ambiguity and the term structure of U.S. Government bonds," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 295-309.
    3. Lorenzo Garlappi & Raman Uppal & Tan Wang, 2007. "Portfolio Selection with Parameter and Model Uncertainty: A Multi-Prior Approach," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 20(1), pages 41-81, January.
    4. Nengjiu Ju & Jianjun Miao, 2012. "Ambiguity, Learning, and Asset Returns," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 80(2), pages 559-591, March.
    5. H. Henry Cao & Bing Han & David Hirshleifer & Harold H. Zhang, 2011. "Fear of the Unknown: Familiarity and Economic Decisions," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 15(1), pages 173-206.
    6. Isaac Kleshchelski & Nicolas Vincent, 2007. "Robust Equilibrium Yield Curves," Cahiers de recherche 08-02, HEC Montréal, Institut d'économie appliquée.
    7. Hui Chen & Nengjiu Ju & Jianjun Miao, 2014. "Dynamic Asset Allocation with Ambiguous Return Predictability," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 17(4), pages 799-823, October.
    8. Luciano Castro & Alain Chateauneuf, 2011. "Ambiguity aversion and trade," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 48(2), pages 243-273, October.
    9. Massimo Guidolin & Francesca Rinaldi, 2013. "Ambiguity in asset pricing and portfolio choice: a review of the literature," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 74(2), pages 183-217, February.
    10. Beber, Alessandro & Breedon, Francis & Buraschi, Andrea, 2010. "Differences in beliefs and currency risk premiums," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 98(3), pages 415-438, December.
    11. Chambers, Robert G., 2014. "Uncertain equilibria and incomplete preferences," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(C), pages 48-54.
    12. Miao, Jianjun & Wang, Neng, 2011. "Risk, uncertainty, and option exercise," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 442-461, April.
    13. Phelim Boyle & Lorenzo Garlappi & Raman Uppal & Tan Wang, 2012. "Keynes Meets Markowitz: The Trade-Off Between Familiarity and Diversification," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 58(2), pages 253-272, February.
    14. Eichberger, Jürgen & Kelsey, David, 2007. "Ambiguity," Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications 07-50, Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim;Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim.
      • Eichberger, Jürgen & Kelsey, David, 2007. "Ambiguity," Papers 07-50, Sonderforschungsbreich 504.
      • Jürgen Eichberger & David Kelsey, 2007. "Ambiguity," Working Papers 0448, University of Heidelberg, Department of Economics, revised Jul 2007.
    15. Hackbarth, Dirk & Miao, Jianjun, 2012. "The dynamics of mergers and acquisitions in oligopolistic industries," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 585-609.
    16. Füllbrunn, Sascha & Rau, Holger A. & Weitzel, Utz, 2014. "Does ambiguity aversion survive in experimental asset markets?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 107(PB), pages 810-826.
    17. Scott Condie & Jayant Ganguli, 2011. "Informational efficiency with ambiguous information," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 48(2), pages 229-242, October.
    18. Branger, Nicole & Mahayni, Antje & Zieling, Daniel, 2015. "Robustness of stable volatility strategies," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 134-151.
    19. Trojani, Fabio & Wiehenkamp, Christian & Wrampelmeyer, Jan, 2014. "Ambiguity and Reality," Working Papers on Finance 1418, University of St. Gallen, School of Finance.
    20. Takayuki Ogawa & Jun Sakamoto, 2018. "Welfare Implications of Mitigating Investment Uncertainty," Discussion Papers in Economics and Business 18-33-Rev., Osaka University, Graduate School of Economics, revised Dec 2018.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D53 - Microeconomics - - General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium - - - Financial Markets
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:oup:rfinst:v:23:y:2010:i:4:p:1325-1359. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Oxford University Press) The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask Oxford University Press to update the entry or send us the correct email address or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/sfsssea.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.