Risk and Return in General: Theory and Evidence
Eric G. Falkenstein
Pine River Capital Management
June 15, 2009
Empirically, standard, intuitive measures of risk like volatility and beta do not generate a positive correlation with average returns in most asset classes. It is possible that risk, however defined, is not positively related to return as an equilibrium in asset markets. This paper presents a survey of data across 20 different asset classes, and presents a model highlighting the assumptions consistent with no risk premium. The key is that when agents are concerned about relative wealth, risk taking is then deviating from the consensus or market portfolio. In this environment, all risk becomes like idiosyncratic risk in the standard model, avoidable so unpriced.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 150
Keywords: Risk and Return, CAPM, APT, Asset Pricing Theory, Utility Theory
JEL Classification: D01, D81, G11, G12
Date posted: June 18, 2009 ; Last revised: November 22, 2011
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