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Housing, house prices, and the equity premium puzzle

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  • Morris A. Davis
  • Robert F. Martin

Abstract

Many recent papers have claimed that when housing services are treated separately from other forms of consumption in utility, a wide range of economic puzzles such as the equity premium puzzle can be explained. Our paper challenges these claims. The key assumption embedded in this literature is that households are not very willing to substitute housing services for consumption. We show that housing services and consumption must be much more substitutable than has been assumed for a neoclassical consumption model to be consistent with U.S. house price data. Further, when forced to match both historical house prices and stock returns, the lowest risk-free rate the model can generate is 11 percent.

Suggested Citation

  • Morris A. Davis & Robert F. Martin, 2005. "Housing, house prices, and the equity premium puzzle," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2005-13, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgfe:2005-13
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Masao Ogaki & Carmen M. Reinhart, 1998. "Measuring Intertemporal Substitution: The Role of Durable Goods," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(5), pages 1078-1098, October.
    2. Piazzesi, Monika & Schneider, Martin & Tuzel, Selale, 2007. "Housing, consumption and asset pricing," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(3), pages 531-569, March.
    3. Morris A. Davis, 2010. "housing and the business cycle," The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics, Palgrave Macmillan.
    4. Raj Chetty & Adam Szeidl, 2016. "Consumption Commitments and Habit Formation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 84, pages 855-890, March.
    5. Davis, Morris A. & Heathcote, Jonathan, 2007. "The price and quantity of residential land in the United States," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(8), pages 2595-2620, November.
    6. McGrattan, Ellen R & Rogerson, Richard & Wright, Randall, 1997. "An Equilibrium Model of the Business Cycle with Household Production and Fiscal Policy," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 38(2), pages 267-290, May.
    7. Hanno N. Lustig & Stijn G. Van Nieuwerburgh, 2005. "Housing Collateral, Consumption Insurance, and Risk Premia: An Empirical Perspective," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(3), pages 1167-1219, June.
    8. Joseph Gyourko & Joseph Tracy, 2006. "Using Home Maintenance and Repairs to Smooth Variable Earnings," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, pages 736-747.
    9. Hall, Alastair R. & Inoue, Atsushi, 2003. "The large sample behaviour of the generalized method of moments estimator in misspecified models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 114(2), pages 361-394, June.
    10. Rupert, Peter & Rogerson, Richard & Wright, Randall, 1995. "Estimating Substitution Elasticities in Household Production Models," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 6(1), pages 179-193, June.
    11. Andrews, Donald W K, 1991. "Heteroskedasticity and Autocorrelation Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(3), pages 817-858, May.
    12. Joseph W. Gruber & Robert F. Martin, 2003. "Precautionary savings and the wealth distribution with illiquid durables," International Finance Discussion Papers 773, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    13. Hanno Lustig & Stijn Van Nieuwerburgh, 2004. "A Theory of Housing Collateral, Consumption Insurance and Risk Premia," NBER Working Papers 10955, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Fernández-Villaverde, Jesús & Krueger, Dirk, 2011. "Consumption And Saving Over The Life Cycle: How Important Are Consumer Durables?," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 15(05), pages 725-770, November.
    15. Robert F. Martin, 2003. "Consumption, durable goods, and transaction costs," International Finance Discussion Papers 756, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    16. George M. Constantinides, 2002. "Rational Asset Prices," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(4), pages 1567-1591, August.
    17. Fratantoni, Michael C, 2001. "Homeownership, Committed Expenditure Risk, and the Stockholding Puzzle," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 53(2), pages 241-259, April.
    18. West, Kenneth D., 2002. "Efficient GMM estimation of weak AR processes," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 75(3), pages 415-418, May.
    19. Adam Szeidl & Raj Chetty, 2005. "Consumption Commitments: Neoclassical Foundations for Habit Formation," 2005 Meeting Papers 122, Society for Economic Dynamics.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Garriga, Carlos & Tang, Yang & Wang, Ping, 2014. "Rural-Urban Migration, Structural Transformation, and Housing Markets in China," Working Papers 2014-28, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, revised 21 Apr 2016.
    2. Granziera, Eleonora & Kozicki, Sharon, 2015. "House price dynamics: Fundamentals and expectations," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 152-165.
    3. Christopher D. Carroll & Misuzu Otsuka & Jiri Slacalek, 2011. "How Large Are Housing and Financial Wealth Effects? A New Approach," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 43(1), pages 55-79, February.
    4. Morris A. Davis & Andreas Lehnert & Robert F. Martin, 2008. "The Rent-Price Ratio For The Aggregate Stock Of Owner-Occupied Housing," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 54(2), pages 279-284, June.
    5. Davis, Morris A. & Heathcote, Jonathan, 2007. "The price and quantity of residential land in the United States," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(8), pages 2595-2620, November.
    6. Alpanda, Sami & Woglom, Geoffrey, 2007. "The Case Against Power Utility and a Suggested Alternative: Resurrecting Exponential Utility," MPRA Paper 5897, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Davis, Morris A., 2009. "The price and quantity of land by legal form of organization in the United States," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 350-359, May.

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    Keywords

    Housing - Prices ; Housing;

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