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The Independence Axiom and Asset Returns

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  • Larry G. Epstein
  • Stanley E. Zin

Abstract

This paper integrates models of atemporal risk preference that relax the independence axiom into a recursive intertemporal asset-pricing framework. The resulting models are amenable to empirical analysis using market data and standard Euler equation methods. We are thereby able to provide the first non-laboratory-based evidence regarding the usefulness of several new theories of risk preference for addressing standard problems in dynamic economics. Using both stock and bond returns data, we find that a model incorporating risk preferences that exhibit firstorder risk aversion accounts for significantly more of the mean and autocorrelation properties of the data than models that exhibit only second-order risk aversion. Unlike the latter class of models which require parameter estimates that are outside of the admissible parameter space, e.g., negative rates of time preference, the model with first-order risk aversion generates point estimates that are economically meaningful. We also examine the relationship between first-order risk aversion and models that employ exogenous stochastic switching processes for consumption growth.

Suggested Citation

  • Larry G. Epstein & Stanley E. Zin, 1991. "The Independence Axiom and Asset Returns," NBER Technical Working Papers 0109, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberte:0109
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    Cited by:

    1. Fernandez, Pablo & Aguirreamalloa, Javier & Liechtenstein, Heinrich, 2009. "The equity premium puzzle: High required equity premium, undervaluation and self fulfilling prophecy," IESE Research Papers D/821, IESE Business School.
    2. Raymond Kan & Cesare Robotti, 2016. "The Exact Distribution of the Hansen–Jagannathan Bound," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 62(7), pages 1915-1943, July.
    3. Angelo Melino, 2010. "Measuring the cost of economic fluctuations with preferences that rationalize the equity premium," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 43(2), pages 405-422, May.
    4. Tao Wu, 2001. "Macro factors and the affine term structure of interest rates," Working Paper Series 2002-06, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
    5. David K. Backus & Bryan R. Routledge & Stanley E. Zin, 2005. "Exotic Preferences for Macroeconomists," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2004, Volume 19, pages 319-414 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Raymond Kan & Cesare Robotti, 2008. "The exact distribution of the Hansen-Jagannathan bound," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2008-09, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
    7. Larry G. Epstein & Emmanuel Farhi & Tomasz Strzalecki, 2014. "How Much Would You Pay to Resolve Long-Run Risk?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(9), pages 2680-2697, September.
    8. Nicholas Barberis & Ming Huang & Richard H. Thaler, 2006. "Individual Preferences, Monetary Gambles, and Stock Market Participation: A Case for Narrow Framing," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(4), pages 1069-1090, September.
    9. Garcia, R. & Bonomo, M., 1993. "Disappointment Aversion as a Solution to the Equity Premium and the Risk- Free Rate Puzzles," Cahiers de recherche 9334, Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ.
    10. Bekaert, Geert & Hodrick, Robert J. & Marshall, David A., 1997. "The implications of first-order risk aversion for asset market risk premiums," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 3-39, September.
    11. Giovannetti, Bruno C., 2013. "Asset pricing under quantile utility maximization," Review of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 169-179.
    12. Angelo Melino & Alan X. Yang, 2003. "State Dependent Preferences Can Explain the Equity Premium Puzzle," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 6(4), pages 806-830, October.
    13. Bryan R. Routledge & Stanley E. Zin, 2010. "Generalized Disappointment Aversion and Asset Prices," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 65(4), pages 1303-1332, August.
    14. Ang, Andrew & Bekaert, Geert & Liu, Jun, 2005. "Why stocks may disappoint," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 471-508, June.
    15. repec:spr:joptap:v:167:y:2015:i:3:d:10.1007_s10957-013-0484-4 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Garcia, René & Kichian, Maral, 2000. "Modelling Risk Premiums in Equity and Foreign Exchange Markets," Staff Working Papers 00-9, Bank of Canada.
    17. Larry G. Epstein & Angelo Melino, 1995. "A Revealed Preference Analysis of Asset Pricing Under Recursive Utility," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 62(4), pages 597-618.
    18. Zin, Stanley E., 2002. "Are behavioral asset-pricing models structural?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 215-228, January.
    19. Nicholas Barberis & Ming Huang, 2006. "The Loss Aversion / Narrow Framing Approach to the Equity Premium Puzzle," NBER Working Papers 12378, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    20. Geert Bekaert & Eric Engstrom, 2009. "Asset Return Dynamics under Bad Environment Good Environment Fundamentals," NBER Working Papers 15222, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    21. Andrew Ang & Joseph Chen & Yuhang Xing, 2006. "Downside Risk," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 19(4), pages 1191-1239.
      • Andrew Ang & Joseph Chen & Yuhang Xing, 2005. "Downside risk," Proceedings, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    22. Maria Grith & Wolfgang Karl Härdle & Volker Krätschmer, 2013. "Reference Dependent Preferences and the EPK Puzzle," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2013-023, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
    23. Todd Sarver, 2012. "Optimal Reference Points and Anticipation," Discussion Papers 1566, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
    24. Stutzer, Michael, 1995. "A Bayesian approach to diagnosis of asset pricing models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 367-397, August.

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