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Habit Formation and the Cross Section of Stock Returns

74 Pages Posted: 15 Dec 2001  

Lior Menzly

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business

Pietro Veronesi

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Tano Santos

Columbia Business School; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: December 12, 2001

Abstract

We develop an external habit persistence model where the time series of the aggregate portfolio and the cross section of stock returns are simultaneously studied and tested. By applying a slightly modified version of the model of Campbell and Cochrane (1999), we obtain closed form solutions for individual securities prices and returns and a full characterizations of the dynamics of the risk-return characteristics of individual securities. We find that each stock return "beta" with respect to the total wealth portfolios is jointly determined by an aggregate variable that depends on the habit level, and an idiosyncratic asset characteristics that depends on the contribution of the security to total consumption relative to its long-run average contribution. This functional form imposes tight predictions on the cross sectional test, including sign and magnitude of the coefficients, and insures that the explanatory power of the beta comes from the predictable part of the realization of returns. An estimate of the model for a set of 20 industry portfolios is able to explain cross-sectional variation in the conditional expected returns. Moreover, the model generates price consumption ratios for individual industries that track well the empirical ones.

Suggested Citation

Menzly, Lior and Veronesi, Pietro and Santos, Tano, Habit Formation and the Cross Section of Stock Returns (December 12, 2001). CRSP Working Paper No. 534. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=294069 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.294069

Lior Menzly

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business ( email )

1101 East 58th Street
c/o PhD Office
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(773) 702-7420 (Phone)
(773) 702-5257 (Fax)

Pietro Veronesi (Contact Author)

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business ( email )

5807 S. Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
773-702-6348 (Phone)
773-702-0458 (Fax)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

77 Bastwick Street
London, EC1V 3PZ
United Kingdom

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Tano Santos

Columbia Business School ( email )

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Room 815
New York, NY 10027
United States
212-854-0489 (Phone)
212-316-9180 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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