The Effect of Housing on Portfolio Choice

  • Author(s): RAJ CHETTY, LÁSZLÓ SÁNDOR, ADAM SZEIDL
  • Published: Apr 21, 2017
  • DOI: 10.1111/jofi.12500

ABSTRACT

We show that characterizing the effects of housing on portfolios requires distinguishing between the effects of home equity and mortgage debt. We isolate exogenous variation in home equity and mortgages by using differences across housing markets in house prices and housing supply elasticities as instruments. Increases in property value (holding home equity constant) reduce stockholdings, while increases in home equity wealth (holding property value constant) raise stockholdings. The stock share of liquid wealth would rise by 1 percentage point—6% of the mean stock share—if a household were to spend 10% less on its house, holding fixed wealth.

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