Human Capital, Business Cycles and Asset Pricing
70 Pages Posted: 1 Jul 2004
Date Written: May 9, 2004
I investigate the asset pricing and business cycle implications of a dynamic stochastic general equilibrium model with human capital and education. Key features of the model are (1) a higher consumption risk resulting from the representative agent's desire to smooth leisure and from the short-run inelasticities in physical and human capital investment, and (2) a countercyclical risk aversion induced by shocks to human capital. The model provides a good fit to a number of asset-pricing facts including a low risk-free rate, an upward-sloping yield curve, a higher equity premium, countercyclical dividend yields, and long-horizon predictability of excess stock returns. On the macroeconomic side, the model matches conventional business-cycle statistics as well as a standard model does, while generating a high volatility in hours worked and a negative correlation between the output and the time spent in education, both of which are consistent with the data.
Keywords: Human capital, education, asset pricing, equity premium puzzle, time-varying risk aversion
JEL Classification: E32, E44, G12
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation