Divergence of Opinion in Complete Markets: A Note

Authors

  • HAL R. VARIAN

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    • University of Michigan. This research was supported in part by the National Science Foundation. I wish to thank Ted Bergstrom and Larry Blume for helpful comments.


ABSTRACT

We consider an Arrow-Debreu model with agents who have different subjective probabilities. In general, asset prices will depend only on aggregate consumption and the distribution of subjective probabilities in each state of nature. If all agents have identical preferences then an asset with “more dispersed” subjective probabilities will have a lower price than an asset with less dispersed subjective probabilities if risk aversion does not decline too rapidly. It seems that this condition is likely to be met in practice, so that increased dispersion of beliefs will generally be associated with reduced asset prices in a given Arrow-Debreu equilibrium.

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