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The Good News and the Bad News about Long-run Stock Market Returns

If stock prices followed a random walk, uncertainty about future stock prices would be so great that the observed bias towards equities in long-term investment portfolios would be surprising. The good news is that if, as a growing body of research suggests, there is even a weak tendency for stationary valuation indicators to predict future stock prices, long-run returns can become markedly more predictable. This is illustrated in a cointegrating VAR, with Tobin?s q as one of the cointegrating relations. The bad news is a corollary of the good news: q and most other indicators point to massive at the end of 1997, and hence the prospect of weak stock prices well into the next century.

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Paper provided by Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge in its series Cambridge Working Papers in Economics with number 9822.

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Date of creation: Oct 1998
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Handle: RePEc:cam:camdae:9822
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.econ.cam.ac.uk/index.htm

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  1. Kenneth R. French & James M. Poterba, 1990. "Were Japanese Stock Prices Too High?," NBER Working Papers 3290, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. De Long, J. Bradford & Shleifer, Andrei & Summers, Lawrence H. & Waldmann, Robert J., 1990. "Noise Trader Risk in Financial Markets," Scholarly Articles 3725552, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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  8. Hayashi, Fumio, 1982. "Tobin's Marginal q and Average q: A Neoclassical Interpretation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(1), pages 213-24, January.
  9. Shiller, Robert J, 1981. "Do Stock Prices Move Too Much to be Justified by Subsequent Changes in Dividends?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(3), pages 421-36, June.
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  12. Pesaran, M. H. & Shin, Y. & Smith, R. J., 1997. "Structural Analysis of Vector Error Correction Models with Exogenous I(1) Variables," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 9706, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  13. Campbell, J.Y. & Ammer, J., 1991. "What Moves The Stock And Bond Markets? A Variance Decomposition For Long- Term Asset Returns," Papers 127, Princeton, Department of Economics - Financial Research Center.
  14. Tobin, James, 1969. "A General Equilibrium Approach to Monetary Theory," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 1(1), pages 15-29, February.
  15. De Bondt, Werner F M & Thaler, Richard, 1985. " Does the Stock Market Overreact?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 40(3), pages 793-805, July.
  16. 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.
  17. Hylleberg, Svend & Mizon, Grayham E., 1989. "A note on the distribution of the least squares estimator of a random walk with drift," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 225-230.
  18. Olivier Blanchard & Changyong Rhee & Lawrence Summers, 1990. "The Stock Market, Profit and Investment," NBER Working Papers 3370, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  20. Geert Bekaert & Robert J. Hodrick, 1991. "Characterizing Predictable Components in Excess Returns on Equity and Foreign Exchange Markets," NBER Working Papers 3790, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Poterba, James M. & Summers, Lawrence H., 1988. "Mean reversion in stock prices : Evidence and Implications," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 27-59, October.
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