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Labor-Market Uncertainty and Portfolio Choice Puzzles

Author

Listed:
  • Yongsung Chang

    (University of Rochester)

  • Jay H. Hong

    (Seoul National University)

  • Marios Karabarbounis

    (Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond)

Abstract

The standard life-cycle models of household portfolio choice have difficulty generating a realistic age profile of risky share. These models not only imply a high risky share on average but also a steeply decreasing age profile, whereas the risky share is mildly increasing in the data. We introduce age-dependent, labor market uncertainty into an otherwise standard model. A great uncertainty in the labor market—high unemployment risk, frequent job turnovers, and an unknown career path—prevents young workers from taking too much risk in the financial market. As labor market uncertainty is resolved over time, workers start taking more risk in their financial portfolios.
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Suggested Citation

  • Yongsung Chang & Jay H. Hong & Marios Karabarbounis, 2014. "Labor-Market Uncertainty and Portfolio Choice Puzzles," RCER Working Papers 582, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
  • Handle: RePEc:roc:rocher:582
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Kjetil Storesletten & Chris Telmer & Amir Yaron, 2007. "Asset Pricing with Idiosyncratic Risk and Overlapping Generations," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 10(4), pages 519-548, October.
    2. Luca Benzoni & Pierre Collin-Dufresne & Robert S. Goldstein, 2007. "Portfolio Choice over the Life-Cycle when the Stock and Labor Markets Are Cointegrated," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(5), pages 2123-2167, October.
    3. Francisco Gomes & Alexander Michaelides, 2005. "Optimal Life-Cycle Asset Allocation: Understanding the Empirical Evidence," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(2), pages 869-904, April.
    4. Mark Huggett and Greg Kaplan, 2012. "The Money Value of a Man," Working Papers gueconwpa~12-12-02, Georgetown University, Department of Economics.
    5. Claudio Campanale, 2011. "Learning, Ambiguity and Life-Cycle Portfolio Allocation," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 14(2), pages 339-367, April.
    6. Robert H. Topel & Michael P. Ward, 1992. "Job Mobility and the Careers of Young Men," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(2), pages 439-479.
    7. repec:pri:cepsud:238kaplan.pdf is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Sekyu Choi & Alexandre Janiak & Benjamín Villena‐Roldán, 2015. "Unemployment, Participation and Worker Flows Over the Life‐Cycle," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 125(589), pages 1705-1733, December.
    9. Luca Benzoni & Olena Chyruk, 2009. "Investing over the life cycle with long-run labor income risk," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Q III, pages 29-43.
    10. Paul A. Samuelson, 2011. "Lifetime Portfolio Selection by Dynamic Stochastic Programming," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: THE KELLY CAPITAL GROWTH INVESTMENT CRITERION THEORY and PRACTICE, chapter 31, pages 465-472 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    11. Fatih Guvenen & Anthony A. Smith, 2014. "Inferring Labor Income Risk and Partial Insurance From Economic Choices," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 82, pages 2085-2129, November.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D14 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Saving; Personal Finance
    • D15 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Intertemporal Household Choice; Life Cycle Models and Saving
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs

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