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Labor income risk and asset returns

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  • Julliard, Christian

Abstract

This paper shows, from the consumer’s budget constraint, that expected future labor income growth rates and the residuals of the cointegration relation among log consumption, log asset wealth and log current labor income (summarized by the variable cay of Lettau and Ludvigson (2001a)), should help predict U.S. quarterly stock market returns and explain the cross-section of average returns. I …nd that a) ‡uctuations in expected future labor income are a strong predictor of both real stock returns and excess returns over a Treasury bill rate, b) when this variable is used as conditioning information for the Consumption Capital Asset Pricing Model (CCAPM), the resulting linear factor model explains four …fth of the variation in observed average returns across the Fama and French (25) portfolios and prices correctly the small growth portfolio. The paper also …nds that about one third of the variance of returns is predictable, over a horizon of one year, using expected future labor income growth rates and cay jointly as forecasting variables.

Suggested Citation

  • Julliard, Christian, 2007. "Labor income risk and asset returns," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 4811, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:4811
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    File URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/4811/
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Mehra, Rajnish & Prescott, Edward C., 1985. "The equity premium: A puzzle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 145-161, March.
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    3. Merton, Robert C, 1973. "An Intertemporal Capital Asset Pricing Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(5), pages 867-887, September.
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    5. Weil, Philippe, 1989. "The equity premium puzzle and the risk-free rate puzzle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 401-421, November.
    6. 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 937-969, July.
    7. Campbell, John Y, 1991. "A Variance Decomposition for Stock Returns," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 101(405), pages 157-179, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Engsted, Tom & Hyde, Stuart & Møller, Stig V., 2010. "Habit formation, surplus consumption and return predictability: International evidence," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 29(7), pages 1237-1255, November.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Human Capital; Labor Income Risk; Expected Returns; Consumption Capital;

    JEL classification:

    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth

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