Journal Article

Wealth Inequality and Asset Pricing

Christian Gollier

in The Review of Economic Studies

Published on behalf of Review of Economic Studies Ltd

Volume 68, issue 1, pages 181-203
Published in print January 2001 | ISSN: 0034-6527
Published online January 2001 | e-ISSN: 1467-937X | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1467-937X.00165
Wealth Inequality and Asset Pricing

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In an Arrow-Debreu exchange economy with identical agents except for their initial endowment, we examine how wealth inequality affects the equilibrium level of the equity premium and the risk-free rate. We first show that wealth inequality raises the equity premium if and only if the inverse of absolute risk aversion is concave in wealth. We then show that the equilibrium risk-free rate is reduced by wealth inequality if the inverse of the coefficient of absolute prudence is concave. We also prove that the combination of a small uninsurable background risk with wealth inequality biases asset pricing towards a larger equity premium and a smaller risk-free rate.

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Economics

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