|Up a level|
We argue that, ceteris paribus, introducing a habit that resolves the equity–premium puzzle is equivalent to increasing the Arrow-Pratt coefficient of relative risk aversion, AP-RRA. If we constrain the AP-RRA to a constant ‘acceptable’ level, the effect on the equity premium is quantitatively insignificant. In a dynamic setting, the fluctuations of the habit increase the equity premium, slightly, though generates unrealistic fluctuations in the risk-free interest rate. We conclude a habit is observationally equivalent, up to a first-order approximation, to a higher AP-RRA and to a preference shock. These effects cannot resolve the equity–premium puzzle.