Larry Epstein

Department of Economics
Boston University
270 Bay State Road
Boston MA 02215

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NBER Working Papers and Publications

October 2013How Much Would You Pay to Resolve Long-Run Risk?
with Emmanuel Farhi, Tomasz Strzalecki: w19541
Though risk aversion and the elasticity of intertemporal substitution have been the subjects of careful scrutiny when calibrating preferences, the long-run risks literature as well as the broader literature using recursive utility to address asset pricing puzzles have ignored the full implications of their parameter specifications. Recursive utility implies that the temporal resolution of risk matters and a quantitative assessment of how much it matters should be part of the calibration process. This paper gives a sense of the magnitudes of implied timing premia. Its objective is to inject temporal resolution of risk into the discussion of the quantitative properties of long-run risks and related models.

Published: Larry G. Epstein & Emmanuel Farhi & Tomasz Strzalecki, 2014. "How Much Would You Pay to Resolve Long-Run Risk?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 104(9), pages 2680-97, September. citation courtesy of

July 2010Ambiguity and Asset Markets
with Martin Schneider: w16181
The Ellsberg paradox suggests that people behave differently in risky situations -- when they are given objective probabilities -- than in ambiguous situations when they are not told the odds (as is typical in financial markets). Such behavior is inconsistent with subjective expected utility theory (SEU), the standard model of choice under uncertainty in financial economics. This article reviews models of ambiguity aversion. It shows that such models -- in particular, the multiple-priors model of Gilboa and Schmeidler -- have implications for portfolio choice and asset pricing that are very different from those of SEU and that help to explain otherwise puzzling features of the data.

Published: Larry G. Epstein & Martin Schneider, 2010. "Ambiguity and Asset Markets," Annual Review of Financial Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 2(1), pages 315-346, December. citation courtesy of

November 1993A Revealed Preference Analysis of Asset Pricing Under Recursive Utility
with Angelo Melino: w4524
This paper considers a representative agent model of asset prices based on a recursive utility specification. A constant elasticity of intertemporal substitution is assumed but the risk-preference component of utility is restricted only by qualitative, nonparametric regularity conditions. The principal contribution is to determine the exhaustive implications of this semiparametric recursive utility model for the one-step ahead joint probability distribution for consumption growth and asset returns.

Published: Review of Economic Studies, Vol. 62, no. 213 (1995): 597-618. citation courtesy of

July 1991The Independence Axiom and Asset Returns
with Stanley E. Zin: t0109
This paper integrates models of atemporal risk preference that relax the independence axiom into a recursive intertemporal asset-pricing framework. The resulting models are amenable to empirical analysis using market data and standard Euler equation methods. We are thereby able to provide the first non-laboratory-based evidence regarding the usefulness of several new theories of risk preference for addressing standard problems in dynamic economics. Using both stock and bond returns data, we find that a model incorporating risk preferences that exhibit firstorder risk aversion accounts for significantly more of the mean and autocorrelation properties of the data than models that exhibit only second-order risk aversion. Unlike the latter class of models which require parameter estimates that...

Published: Epstein, Larry G. and Stanley E. Zin. "The Independence Axiom And Asset Returns," Journal of Empirical Finance, 2001, v8(5,Dec), 537-572.

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