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Optimal life-cycle asset allocation: understanding the empirical evidence

Gomes, Francisco and Michaelides, Alexander (2003) Optimal life-cycle asset allocation: understanding the empirical evidence. Discussion paper: UBS Pensions Series 020, 474. Financial Markets Group, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK.

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Identification Number: 474

Abstract

We show that a life-cycle model with realistically calibrated uninsurable labor income risk and moderate risk aversion can simultaneously match stock market participation rates and asset allocation decisions conditional on participation. The key ingredients of the model are Epstein-Zin preferences, a fixed stock market entry cost, and moderate heterogeneity in risk aversion. Households with low risk aversion smooth earnings shocks with a small buffer stock of assets and consequently most of them (optimally) never invest in equities. Therefore, the marginal stockholders are (endogenously) more risk-averse and as a result they do not invest their portfolios fully in stocks.

Item Type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)
Official URL: http://fmg.lse.ac.uk
Additional Information: © 2003 The Authors
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HG Finance
H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
JEL classification: G - Financial Economics > G1 - General Financial Markets > G11 - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
Sets: Research centres and groups > Financial Markets Group (FMG)
Collections > Economists Online
Departments > Economics
Collections > LSE Financial Markets Group (FMG) Working Papers
Date Deposited: 19 Aug 2009 10:14
Last Modified: 27 Feb 2014 15:35
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/24900

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