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Macroeconomic volatility and the equity premium


  • Keith Sill


Recent empirical work documents a decline in the U.S. equity premium and a decline in the standard deviation of real output growth. We investigate the link between aggregate risk and the asset returns in a dynamic production based asset-pricing model. When calibrated to match asset return moments, the model implies that the post-1984 reduction in TFP shock volatility of 60 percent gives rise to a 40 percent decline in the equity premium. Lower macroeconomic risk post-1984 can account for a substantial fraction of the decline in the equity premium.

Suggested Citation

  • Keith Sill, 2006. "Macroeconomic volatility and the equity premium," Working Papers 06-1, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedpwp:06-1

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Mehra, Rajnish & Prescott, Edward C., 1985. "The equity premium: A puzzle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 145-161, March.
    2. Miles S. Kimball & John G. Fernald & Susanto Basu, 2006. "Are Technology Improvements Contractionary?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(5), pages 1418-1448, December.
    3. Sylvain Leduc & Keith Sill, 2007. "Monetary Policy, Oil Shocks, and TFP: Accounting for the Decline in U.S. Volatility," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 10(4), pages 595-614, October.
    4. Olivier Blanchard & John Simon, 2001. "The Long and Large Decline in U.S. Output Volatility," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 32(1), pages 135-174.
    5. Lawrence J. Christiano & Michele Boldrin & Jonas D. M. Fisher, 2001. "Habit Persistence, Asset Returns, and the Business Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(1), pages 149-166, March.
    6. John Shea, 1999. "What Do Technology Shocks Do?," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1998, volume 13, pages 275-322 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Andres Arias & Gary Hansen & Lee Ohanian, 2007. "Why have business cycle fluctuations become less volatile?," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 32(1), pages 43-58, July.
    8. Martin Lettau & Sydney C. Ludvigson & Jessica A. Wachter, 2008. "The Declining Equity Premium: What Role Does Macroeconomic Risk Play?," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 21(4), pages 1653-1687, July.
    9. Carmen Broto & Esther Ruiz, 2004. "Estimation methods for stochastic volatility models: a survey," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 18(5), pages 613-649, December.
    10. Jermann, Urban J., 1998. "Asset pricing in production economies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 257-275, April.
    11. Ravi Jagannathan & Ellen R. McGrattan & Anna Scherbina, 2000. "The declining U.S. equity premium," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Fall, pages 3-19.
    12. Leduc, Sylvain & Sill, Keith, 2004. "A quantitative analysis of oil-price shocks, systematic monetary policy, and economic downturns," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(4), pages 781-808, May.
    13. Neville Francis & Valerie A. Ramey, 2002. "Is the Technology-Driven Real Business Cycle Hypothesis Dead?," NBER Working Papers 8726, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Kim, Chang-Jin & Nelson, Charles R & Piger, Jeremy, 2004. "The Less-Volatile U.S. Economy: A Bayesian Investigation of Timing, Breadth, and Potential Explanations," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 22(1), pages 80-93, January.
    15. Abel, Andrew B., 1999. "Risk premia and term premia in general equilibrium," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 3-33, February.
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    Cited by:

    1. Addessi, William & Busato, Francesco, 2009. "Fair wages, labor relations and asset returns," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 5(4), pages 410-430, December.

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