Using Long-Run Consumption-Return Correlations to Test Asset Pricing Models
47 Pages Posted: 14 Mar 2009 Last revised: 17 May 2012
Date Written: February 2012
This paper examines a new set of implications for existing asset pricing models regarding the correlation between returns and consumption growth over both the short run and the long run. The findings suggest that external habit formation models face a challenge in producing two robust facts in aggregate data, namely, that stock market returns lead consumption growth, and that the correlation between returns and consumption growth is higher at low frequencies. To reconcile these facts with a consumption-based model, I demonstrate the need for focusing on models that contain a forward looking consumption component, i.e., models that allow for both trend and cyclical fluctuations in consumption, and that link returns to cyclical fluctuations in consumption. Long-run risk models provide examples of models that contain this consumption component.
Keywords: Long-run risk, habit-formation, forward-looking, long-run correlation
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