NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Predicting the Equity Premium With Dividend Ratios

Amit Goyal, Ivo Welch

NBER Working Paper No. 8788
Issued in February 2002
NBER Program(s):   AP   CF

Our paper reexamines the forecasting regressions which predict annual aggregate stock market returns net of the risk-free rate with lagged aggregate dividend-yield ratios and dividend-price ratios. Prior to 1990, the conditional dividend yield could reliably outperform the historical equity premium mean in predicting future equity premia *in-sample*. But our paper shows that the dividend ratios could not outperform the prevailing unconditional mean *out-of-sample*, plus any residual power was directly related to only two years, 1974 and 1975. As of 2000, even this in-sample predictive ability has disappeared. Our paper also documents changes in the time-series processes of the dividends themselves and shows that an increasing persistence of dividend-price ratio is largely responsible for weak stock return predictability.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w8788

Published: Goyal, Amit, and Ivo Welch. "Predicting the Equity Premium With Dividend Ratios." Management Science 49-5 (May 2003): 639-654. citation courtesy of

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