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Ratchet vs Blasé Investors and Asset Markets

His paper proposes a new wealth-dependent utility function for the inter-temporal consumption and portfolio problem, in which the subsistance (bliss) consumption level is a function of wealth. Ratchet effects obtain when higher wealth increases the subsistance consumption level; blasé behavior occurs when higher wealth reduces it. We have three contributions: (i) we identify closed-form solutions for optimal consumption and portfolio rules; (ii) we use the optimal rules to estimate the model using aggregate portfolio data, and (iii) we derive and discuss the pricing implications of our results. Our estimates are consistent with blasé behavior and counter-cyclical risk aversion.
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