Empirical Pricing Kernels and Investor Preferences
This paper analyzes empirical market utility functions and pricing kernels derived from the DAX and DAX option data for three market regimes. A consistent parametric framework of stochastic volatility is used. All empirical market utility functions show a region of risk proclivity that is reproduced by adopting the hypothesis of heterogeneous individual investors whose utility functions have a switching point between bullish and bearish attitudes. The inverse problem of finding the distribution of individual switching points is formulated in the space of stock returns by discretization as a quadratic optimization problem. The resulting distributions vary over time and correspond to different market regimes.
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