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Risk Aversion and Determinants of Stock Market Behavior

  • Robert S. Pindyck

A simple model of equity pricing is developed to address two related questions. First, to what extent can unanticipated changes in such"fundamental" variables as profitability, real interest rates, inflation, and the variance of returns account for the observed behavior of the stockmarket? Second, how risk averse are investors in the aggregate?We find that the pretax profit rate and the variance of returns are both significant explanators of the market, and interest rates somewhat less so. Estimates of the index of relative risk aversion are obtained that put that parameter in the range of 3 to 4.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w1921.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 1921.

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Date of creation: May 1986
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Publication status: published as Review of Economics and Statistics, vol. 70, no. 2, pp. 183-190, May 1988.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:1921
Note: ME
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  1. Martin Feldstein, 1983. "Inflation and the Stock Market," NBER Chapters, in: Inflation, Tax Rules, and Capital Formation, pages 186-198 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. S. Grossman & R. Shiller, . "The Determinants of the Variability of Stock Market Price," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 18-80, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
  3. James M. Poterba & Lawrence H. Summers, 1984. "The Persistence of Volatility and Stock Market Fluctuations," NBER Working Papers 1462, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Martin Feldstein, 1979. "Inflation, Tax Rules, and the Stock Market," NBER Working Papers 0403, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Mankiw, N Gregory & Rotemberg, Julio J & Summers, Lawrence H, 1985. "Intertemporal Substitution in Macroeconomics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 100(1), pages 225-51, February.
  6. Zvi Bodie & Alex Kane & Robert L. McDonald, 1983. "Why Are Real Interest Rates So High?," NBER Working Papers 1141, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Martin Feldstein & James M. Poterba & Louis Dicks-Mireaux, 1981. "The Effective Tax Rate and the Pretax Rate of Return," NBER Working Papers 0740, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Pindyck, Robert S, 1984. "Risk, Inflation, and the Stock Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 335-51, June.
  9. Stanley Fischer & Robert C. Merton, 1985. "Macroeconomics and Finance: The Role of the Stock Market," NBER Working Papers 1291, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Hansen, Lars Peter & Singleton, Kenneth J, 1983. "Stochastic Consumption, Risk Aversion, and the Temporal Behavior of Asset Returns," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(2), pages 249-65, April.
  11. Merton, Robert C., 1980. "On estimating the expected return on the market : An exploratory investigation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(4), pages 323-361, December.
  12. Jeffrey A. Frankel, 1983. "A Test of Portfolio Crowding-Out and Related Issues in Finance," NBER Working Papers 1205, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Friend, Irwin & Blume, Marshall E, 1975. "The Demand for Risky Assets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 65(5), pages 900-922, December.
  14. Mervyn A. King & Jonathan I. Leape, 1984. "Wealth and Portfolio Composition: Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 1468, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Merton, Robert C, 1973. "An Intertemporal Capital Asset Pricing Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(5), pages 867-87, September.
  16. Officer, R R, 1973. "The Variability of the Market Factor of the New York Stock Exchange," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 46(3), pages 434-53, July.
  17. Benjamin M. Friedman, 1985. "Crowding Out or Crowding In? Evidence on Debt-Equity Substitutability," NBER Working Papers 1565, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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