The Equity Premium

29 Pages Posted: 20 Jul 2000

See all articles by Eugene F. Fama

Eugene F. Fama

University of Chicago - Finance

Kenneth R. French

Dartmouth College - Tuck School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: April 2001


We estimate the equity premium using dividend and earnings growth rates to measure the expected rate of capital gain. Our estimates for 1951-2000, 2.55% and 4.32%, are much lower than the equity premium produced by the average stock return, 7.43%. Our evidence suggests that the high average return for 1951-2000 is due to a decline in discount rates that produces large unexpected capital gains. Our main conclusion is that the stock return of the last half-century is a lot higher than expected.

JEL Classification: G12

Suggested Citation

Fama, Eugene F. and French, Kenneth R., The Equity Premium (April 2001). EFMA 2001 Lugano Meetings; CRSP Working Paper No. 522. Available at SSRN: or

Eugene F. Fama (Contact Author)

University of Chicago - Finance ( email )

5807 S. Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
773-702-7282 (Phone)
773-702-9937 (Fax)

Kenneth R. French

Dartmouth College - Tuck School of Business ( email )

Hanover, NH 03755
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics