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International portfolio choice, liquidity constraints and the home equity bias puzzle

  • Alexander Michaelides
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    This paper solves for optimal international portfolio choice in the presence of liquidity constraints and undiversifiable labor income risk. Optimal portfolios are internationally diversified while positive correlation between domestic stock market returns and permanent labor income shocks can generate a complete portfolio specialization in foreign stocks. Nevertheless, either small costs associated with investing abroad or a slightly positive domestic to foreign equity premium differential are sufficient to either deter households from participating in a foreign market or generate a substantial bias for home equities. The benefits of international diversification are limited because consumption fluctuations can be smoothed with a small amount of buffer stock saving, while exchange rate risk makes foreign investments less appealing to risk averse investors.

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    File URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/195/
    File Function: Open access version.
    Download Restriction: no

    Paper provided by London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library in its series LSE Research Online Documents on Economics with number 195.

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    Date of creation: Dec 2003
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    Publication status: Published in Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, December, 2003, 28(3), pp. 555-594. ISSN: 0165-1889
    Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:195
    Contact details of provider: Postal: LSE Library Portugal Street London, WC2A 2HD, U.K.
    Phone: +44 (020) 7405 7686
    Web page: http://www.lse.ac.uk/

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    1. George M. Constantinides & John B. Donaldson & Rajnish Mehra, 2002. "Junior Can'T Borrow: A New Perspective On The Equity Premium Puzzle," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(1), pages 269-296, February.
    2. Richard Portes & Helene Rey, 1999. "The Determinants of Cross-Border Equity Flows," NBER Working Papers 7336, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Gehrig, Thomas, 1993. " An Information Based Explanation of the Domestic Bias in International Equity Investment," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 95(1), pages 97-109.
    4. Luis M. Viceira, 2001. "Optimal Portfolio Choice for Long-Horizon Investors with Nontradable Labor Income," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(2), pages 433-470, 04.
    5. Harald Hau, 2001. "Location Matters: An Examination of Trading Profits," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(5), pages 1959-1983, October.
    6. Christopher D. Carroll, 1996. "Buffer-Stock Saving and the Life Cycle/Permanent Income Hypothesis," NBER Working Papers 5788, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Angus Deaton, 1989. "Saving and Liquidity Constraints," NBER Working Papers 3196, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Solnik, Bruno H., 1974. "An equilibrium model of the international capital market," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 8(4), pages 500-524, August.
    9. repec:att:wimass:9722 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Gourinchas, Pierre-Olivier & Parker, Jonathan A, 2000. "Consumption Over the Life-Cycle," CEPR Discussion Papers 2345, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    11. Joshua D. Coval & Tobias J. Moskowitz, 1999. "Home Bias at Home: Local Equity Preference in Domestic Portfolios," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 54(6), pages 2045-2073, December.
    12. Tesar, Linda L. & Werner, Ingrid M., 1995. "Home bias and high turnover," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 14(4), pages 467-492, August.
    13. Tauchen, George & Hussey, Robert, 1991. "Quadrature-Based Methods for Obtaining Approximate Solutions to Nonlinear Asset Pricing Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(2), pages 371-96, March.
    14. Karen K. Lewis, 1999. "Trying to Explain Home Bias in Equities and Consumption," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(2), pages 571-608, June.
    15. Sydney C. Ludvigson & Alexander Michaelides, 2001. "Does Buffer-Stock Saving Explain the Smoothness and Excess Sensitivity of Consumption?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 631-647, June.
    16. Arthur B. Kennickell & Martha Starr-McCluer, 1994. "Changes in family finances from 1989 to 1992: evidence from the Survey of Consumer Finances," Federal Reserve Bulletin, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.), issue Oct, pages 861-882.
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