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The effect of age on portfolio choices: evidence form an Italian pension fund

  • Giuseppe Cappelletti

    ()

    (Bank of Italy)

  • Giovanni Guazzarotti

    ()

    (Bank of Italy)

  • Pietro Tommasino

    ()

    (Bank of Italy)

Optimal Portfolio Theory prescribes that investors reduce their exposure to financial market risk as they get near to retirement. To assess the effect of ageing on portfolio choices, we study the case of an Italian defined contribution pension fund during the period 2002-08. We find that on average the willingness to hold risky assets does indeed significantly decrease with age, but we also document that inertial behaviour is quite widespread, and can be very costly.

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Paper provided by Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area in its series Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) with number 768.

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Date of creation: Jul 2010
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Handle: RePEc:bdi:wptemi:td_768_10
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Web page: http://www.bancaditalia.it
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  1. Pierre-André Chiappori & Monica Paiella, 2008. "Relative Risk Aversion Is Constant: Evidence from Panel Data," Discussion Papers 5_2008, D.E.S. (Department of Economic Studies), University of Naples "Parthenope", Italy.
  2. Markus K. Brunnermeier & Stefan Nagel, 2008. "Do Wealth Fluctuations Generate Time-Varying Risk Aversion? Micro-evidence on Individuals," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 713-36, June.
  3. Giuseppe Cappelletti, 2012. "Do wealth fluctuations generate time-varying risk aversion? Italian micro-evidence on household asset allocation," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 845, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  4. Luigi Guiso & Michael Haliassos & Tullio Jappelli, 2003. "Household stockholding in Europe: where do we stand and where do we go?," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 18(36), pages 123-170, 04.
  5. James J. Choi & David Laibson & Brigitte C. Madrian, 2009. "Reducing the Complexity Costs of 401(k) Participation Through Quick Enrollment," NBER Chapters, in: Developments in the Economics of Aging, pages 57-82 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Martin Feldstein & Horst Siebert, 2002. "Social Security Pension Reform in Europe," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number feld02-2, November.
  7. Bilias, Yannis & Georgarakos, Dimitris & Haliassos, Michalis, 2009. "Portfolio Inertia and Stock Market Fluctuations," CEPR Discussion Papers 7239, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Campbell, John Y. & Viceira, Luis M., 2002. "Strategic Asset Allocation: Portfolio Choice for Long-Term Investors," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198296942.
  9. Waldo Tapia & Juan Yermo, 2007. "Implications of Behavioural Economics for Mandatory Individual Account Pension Systems," OECD Working Papers on Insurance and Private Pensions 11, OECD Publishing.
  10. Papke, Leslie E., 2004. "Individual financial decisions in retirement saving plans: the role of participant-direction," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(1-2), pages 39-61, January.
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