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An Empirical Test of Pricing Kernel Monotonicity

  • Beare, Brendan K.
  • Schmidt, Lawrence

A recent literature in finance concerns a curious recurring feature of estimated pricing kernels. Classical theory dictates that the pricing kernel { defined loosely as the ratio of Arrow security prices to an objective probability measure { should be a decreasing function of aggregate resources. Yet a large number of recent empirical studies appear to contradict this prediction. The nonmonotonicity of empirical pricing kernel estimates has become known as the pricing kernel puzzle. In this paper we propose and apply a formal statistical test of pricing kernel monotonicity. The test involves assessing the concavity of the ordinal dominance curve associated with the risk neutral and physical return distributions. We apply the test using thirteen years of data from the market for European put and call options written on the S&P 500 index. Statistically significant violations of pricing kernel monotonicity occur in a substantial proportion of months.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, UC San Diego in its series University of California at San Diego, Economics Working Paper Series with number qt5572n8pc.

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Date of creation: 21 Jul 2011
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Handle: RePEc:cdl:ucsdec:qt5572n8pc
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  1. Giovanni BARONE-ADESI & Hakim DALL'O, 2010. "Is the Price Kernel Monotone?," Swiss Finance Institute Research Paper Series 10-03, Swiss Finance Institute, revised Apr 2010.
  2. Ait-Sahalia, Yacine & Lo, Andrew W., 2000. "Nonparametric risk management and implied risk aversion," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 94(1-2), pages 9-51.
  3. Joshua Rosenberg & Robert F. Engle, 2000. "Empirical Pricing Kernels," New York University, Leonard N. Stern School Finance Department Working Paper Seires 99-014, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business-.
  4. Dybvig, Philip H, 1988. "Distributional Analysis of Portfolio Choice," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 61(3), pages 369-93, July.
  5. Christopher A. Carolan & Joshua M. Tebbs, 2005. "Nonparametric tests for and against likelihood ratio ordering in the two-sample problem," Biometrika, Biometrika Trust, vol. 92(1), pages 159-171, March.
  6. Jackwerth, Jens Carsten & Rubinstein, Mark, 1996. " Recovering Probability Distributions from Option Prices," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 51(5), pages 1611-32, December.
  7. Wolfgang Karl Härdle & Yarema Okhrin & Weining Wang, 2010. "Uniform confidence bands for pricing kernels," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2010-003, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
  8. Fousseni Chabi-Yo & René Garcia & Eric Renault, 2008. "State Dependence Can Explain the Risk Aversion Puzzle," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 21(2), pages 973-1011, April.
  9. Bakshi, Gurdip & Madan, Dilip & Panayotov, George, 2010. "Returns of claims on the upside and the viability of U-shaped pricing kernels," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(1), pages 130-154, July.
  10. George M. Constantinides & Jens Carsten Jackwerth & Stylianos Perrakis, 2008. "Mispricing of S&P 500 Index Options," NBER Working Papers 14544, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Beare, Brendan K., 2011. "Measure preserving derivatives and the pricing kernel puzzle," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(6), pages 689-697.
  12. Thorsten HENS & Christian REICHLIN, 2010. "Three Solutions to the Pricing Kernel Puzzle," Swiss Finance Institute Research Paper Series 10-14, Swiss Finance Institute.
  13. Jens Carsten Jackwerth., 1996. "Recovering Risk Aversion from Option Prices and Realized Returns," Research Program in Finance Working Papers RPF-265, University of California at Berkeley.
  14. Peter Reinhard Hansen & Zhuo (Albert) Huang & Howard Howan Shek, . "Realized GARCH: A Complete Model of Returns and Realized Measures of Volatility," CREATES Research Papers 2010-13, School of Economics and Management, University of Aarhus.
  15. Kai Detlefsen & Wolfgang Härdle & Rouslan Moro, 2007. "Empirical Pricing Kernels and Investor Preferences," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2007-017, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
  16. Yuri Golubev & Wolfgang Härdle & Roman Timonfeev, 2008. "Testing Monotonicity of Pricing Kernels," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2008-001, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
  17. Wolfgang Härdle & Volker Krätschmer & Rouslan Moro, 2009. "A Microeconomic Explanation of the EPK Paradox," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2009-010, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
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