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On the Consequences of State Dependent Preferences for the Pricing of Financial Assets

  • Danthine, Jean-Pierre
  • Donaldson, John B
  • Giannikos, Chrisos
  • Guirguis, Hany

This Paper introduces state dependent utility into the standard Mehra and Prescott (1985) economy by allowing the representative agent’s coefficient of relative risk aversion to vary with the underlying economy’s growth rate. Existence of equilibrium is proved and its asymptotic properties analysed. This generalization leads to level dependent marginal rates of substitution, a property that sharply distinguishes this model from the standard construct. For very low coefficients of relative risk aversion, the equilibrium risk free and risky security returns are demonstrated to have volatilities and an associated equity premium that substantially exceed what is found in the data. This provides a contrasting perspective on the classic ‘equity premium puzzle.’

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 3697.

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Date of creation: Jan 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:3697
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  1. Danthine, Jean-Pierre & Donaldson, John B. & Giannikos, Christos & Guirguis, Hany, 2004. "On the consequences of state dependent preferences for the pricing of financial assets," Finance Research Letters, Elsevier, vol. 1(3), pages 143-153, September.
  2. Isen, Alice M. & Geva, Nehemia, 1987. "The influence of positive affect on acceptable level of risk: The person with a large canoe has a large worry," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 39(2), pages 145-154, April.
  3. Angelo Melino & Alan X. Yang, 2003. "State Dependent Preferences Can Explain the Equity Premium Puzzle," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 6(4), pages 806-830, October.
  4. Stephen Gordon & Pascal St-Amour, 2003. "Asset Returns and State-Dependent Risk Preferences," CIRANO Working Papers 2003s-09, CIRANO.
  5. Rajnish Mehra & Raaj Sah, 1999. "Can Small Fluctuations in Investors' Subjective Preferences Induce Large Volatility in Equity Prices?," Working Papers 9917, Harris School of Public Policy Studies, University of Chicago.
  6. Cochrane, John H. & Campbell, John, 1999. "By Force of Habit: A Consumption-Based Explanation of Aggregate Stock Market Behavior," Scholarly Articles 3119444, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  7. Antonio Falato, 2008. "Happiness maintenance and asset prices," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2008-19, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  8. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1978. "Asset Prices in an Exchange Economy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(6), pages 1429-45, November.
  9. Constantinides, George M, 1990. "Habit Formation: A Resolution of the Equity Premium Puzzle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(3), pages 519-43, June.
  10. Mehra, Rajnish & Prescott, Edward C., 1985. "The equity premium: A puzzle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 145-161, March.
  11. Phillippe Weil, 1997. "The Equity Premium Puzzle and the Risk-Free Rate Puzzle," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1833, David K. Levine.
  12. Antoni Bosch-Domènech & Joaquim Silvestre, 1999. "Does risk aversion or attraction depend on income? An experiment," Economics Working Papers 361, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Mar 1999.
  13. Nygren, Thomas E. & Isen, Alice M. & Taylor, Pamela J. & Dulin, Jessica, 1996. "The Influence of Positive Affect on the Decision Rule in Risk Situations: Focus on Outcome (and Especially Avoidance of Loss) Rather Than Probability," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 59-72, April.
  14. Epstein, Larry G & Zin, Stanley E, 1989. "Substitution, Risk Aversion, and the Temporal Behavior of Consumption and Asset Returns: A Theoretical Framework," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(4), pages 937-69, July.
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