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The Term Structure of the Risk-Return Tradeoff

  • Campbell, John Y
  • Viceira, Luis M

Recent research in empirical finance has documented that expected excess returns on bonds and stocks, real interest rates, and risk shift over time in predictable ways. Furthermore, these shifts tend to persist over long periods of time. In this paper we propose an empirical model that is able to capture these complex dynamics, yet is simple to apply in practice, and we explore its implications for asset allocation. Changes in investment opportunities can alter the risk-return tradeoff of bonds, stocks, and cash across investment horizons, thus creating a ‘term structure of the risk-return tradeoff’. We show how to extract this term structure from our parsimonious model of return dynamics, and illustrate our approach using data from the US stock and bond markets. We find that asset return predictability has important effects on the variance and correlation structure of returns on stocks, bonds and T-bills across investment horizons.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 4914.

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Date of creation: Feb 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:4914
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  1. Robert J. Shiller & John Y. Campbell & Kermit L. Schoenholtz, 1983. "Forward Rates and Future Policy: Interpreting the Term Structure of Interest Rates," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 14(1), pages 173-224.
  2. Merton, Robert C, 1969. "Lifetime Portfolio Selection under Uncertainty: The Continuous-Time Case," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 51(3), pages 247-57, August.
  3. George Chacko & Luis M. Viceira, 1999. "Dynamic Consumption and Portfolio Choice with Stochastic Volatility in Incomplete Markets," NBER Working Papers 7377, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. John Y. Campbell & Yeung Lewis Chan & Luis M. Viceira, 2001. "A Multivariate Model of Strategic Asset Allocation," NBER Working Papers 8566, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Glosten, Lawrence R & Jagannathan, Ravi & Runkle, David E, 1993. " On the Relation between the Expected Value and the Volatility of the Nominal Excess Return on Stocks," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 48(5), pages 1779-1801, December.
  6. Graham Elliott & James H. Stock, 1992. "Inference in Time Series Regression When the Order of Integration of a Regressor is Unknown," NBER Technical Working Papers 0122, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Engle, Robert, 2002. "Dynamic Conditional Correlation: A Simple Class of Multivariate Generalized Autoregressive Conditional Heteroskedasticity Models," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(3), pages 339-50, July.
  8. Campbell, John & Yogo, Motohiro, 2006. "Efficient tests of stock return predictability," Scholarly Articles 3122601, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  9. Campbell, John Y, 1991. "A Variance Decomposition for Stock Returns," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 101(405), pages 157-79, March.
  10. Harvey, Campbell R, 1991. " The World Price of Covariance Risk," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 46(1), pages 111-57, March.
  11. Geert Bekaert & Robert J. Hodrick & David Marshall, 1996. "On biases in tests of the expectations hypothesis of the term structure of interest rates," Working Paper Series, Issues in Financial Regulation WP-96-3, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  12. Robert J. Shiller & John Y. Campbell, 1986. "The Dividend-Price Ratio and Expectations of Future Dividends and Discount Factors," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 812, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  13. Campbell, John Y. & Viceira, Luis M., 2002. "Strategic Asset Allocation: Portfolio Choice for Long-Term Investors," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198296942.
  14. Vuolteenaho, Tuomo & Campbell, John, 2004. "Inflation Illusion and Stock Prices," Scholarly Articles 3196090, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  15. Goetzman, W.N. & Jorion, P., 1992. "Testing the Predictive Power of Dividend Yields," Papers 93-03, Columbia - Graduate School of Business.
  16. Hodrick, Robert J, 1992. "Dividend Yields and Expected Stock Returns: Alternative Procedures for Inference and Measurement," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 5(3), pages 357-86.
  17. R. C. Merton, 1970. "Optimum Consumption and Portfolio Rules in a Continuous-time Model," Working papers 58, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  18. Fama, Eugene F. & Schwert, G. William, 1977. "Asset returns and inflation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 115-146, November.
  19. Roberto Rigobon & Brian Sack, 2003. "Spillovers Across U.S. Financial Markets," NBER Working Papers 9640, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Michael W. Brandt & Amit Goyal & Pedro Santa-Clara & Jonathan Storud, 2004. "A Simulation Approach to Dynamic Portfolio Choice with an Application to Learning About Return Predictability," NBER Working Papers 10934, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Campbell, John, 2001. "Why Long Horizons? A Study of Power Against Persistent Alternatives," Scholarly Articles 3196341, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  22. John Y. Campbell, 1985. "Stock Returns and the Term Structure," NBER Working Papers 1626, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 1988. "Dividend yields and expected stock returns," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-25, October.
  24. John Y. Campbell & Luis M. Viceira, 1999. "Consumption And Portfolio Decisions When Expected Returns Are Time Varying," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(2), pages 433-495, May.
  25. Yacine Aït-Sahalia, 2001. "Variable Selection for Portfolio Choice," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(4), pages 1297-1351, 08.
  26. Stambaugh, Robert F., 1999. "Predictive regressions," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(3), pages 375-421, December.
  27. Samuelson, Paul A, 1969. "Lifetime Portfolio Selection by Dynamic Stochastic Programming," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 51(3), pages 239-46, August.
  28. repec:cup:etheor:v:10:y:1994:i:3-4:p:672-700 is not listed on IDEAS
  29. Brennan, Michael J. & Schwartz, Eduardo S. & Lagnado, Ronald, 1997. "Strategic asset allocation," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 21(8-9), pages 1377-1403, June.
  30. Cavanagh, Christopher L. & Elliott, Graham & Stock, James H., 1995. "Inference in Models with Nearly Integrated Regressors," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 11(05), pages 1131-1147, October.
  31. Fama, Eugene F., 1984. "The information in the term structure," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 509-528, December.
  32. Nelson, Charles R & Kim, Myung J, 1993. " Predictable Stock Returns: The Role of Small Sample Bias," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 48(2), pages 641-61, June.
  33. Merton, Robert C, 1973. "An Intertemporal Capital Asset Pricing Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(5), pages 867-87, September.
  34. Nicholas Barberis, 2000. "Investing for the Long Run when Returns Are Predictable," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(1), pages 225-264, 02.
  35. Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 1989. "Business conditions and expected returns on stocks and bonds," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 23-49, November.
  36. repec:cup:etheor:v:11:y:1995:i:5:p:1131-47 is not listed on IDEAS
  37. Avramov, Doron, 2002. "Stock return predictability and model uncertainty," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(3), pages 423-458, June.
  38. Harvey, Campbell R., 1989. "Time-varying conditional covariances in tests of asset pricing models," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 289-317.
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