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Leverage and Asset Prices: An Experiment

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  • Marco Cipriani
  • Ana Fostel
  • Daniel Houser

Abstract

We develop a model of leverage that is amenable to laboratory implementation and gather experimental data. We compare two identical economies: in one economy, agents cannot borrow; in the other, they can leverage a risky asset to issue debt. Leverage increases asset prices in the laboratory. This increase is significant and quantitatively close to what theory predicts. Moreover, also as theory suggests, leverage allows gains from trade to be realized in the laboratory. Finally, the mechanism generating the price increase in the lab is due to the asset role as collateral, and different from what we would observe with a simple credit line or bigger cash endowments.

Suggested Citation

  • Marco Cipriani & Ana Fostel & Daniel Houser, 2020. "Leverage and Asset Prices: An Experiment," NBER Working Papers 26701, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:26701
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Plott, Charles R & Sunder, Shyam, 1982. "Efficiency of Experimental Security Markets with Insider Information: An Application of Rational-Expectations Models," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(4), pages 663-698, August.
    2. Fostel, Ana & Geanakoplos, John, 2012. "Why does bad news increase volatility and decrease leverage?," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 147(2), pages 501-525.
    3. Ana Fostel & John Geanakoplos, 2011. "Endogenous Leverage: VaR and Beyond," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1800, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
    4. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
    5. Adrian, Tobias & Shin, Hyun Song, 2010. "Liquidity and leverage," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 418-437, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Sean Crockett, 2013. "Price Dynamics In General Equilibrium Experiments," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(3), pages 421-438, July.
    2. Rud, Olga A. & Rabanal, Jean Paul & Sharifova, Manizha, 2019. "An experiment on the efficiency of bilateral exchange under incomplete markets," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 114(C), pages 253-267.
    3. Mehmet Benturk & Marshall J. Burak, 2018. "Modelling Haircuts: Evidence from NYSE Stocks," Journal of Applied Finance & Banking, SCIENPRESS Ltd, vol. 8(4), pages 1-6.
    4. Bengui, Julien & Phan, Toan, 2018. "Asset pledgeability and endogenously leveraged bubbles," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 177(C), pages 280-314.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • A10 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - General
    • C90 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - General
    • D52 - Microeconomics - - General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium - - - Incomplete Markets
    • D53 - Microeconomics - - General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium - - - Financial Markets
    • G10 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - General (includes Measurement and Data)

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