Asset Pricing and Decarbonization: Diversification versus Climate Action

Feb 2020 | 901

Authors: Rick Van der Ploeg Christoph Hambel, Holger Kraft

Asset pricing and climate policy are analyzed in a global economy where consumption goods are produced by both a green and a carbon-intensive (dirty) sector. We allow for endogenous growth and three types of damages from global warming. It is shown that, initially, the desire to diversify assets in the portfolio complements the attempt to mitigate economic damages from climate change. In the long run, however, there is a trade-off between diversification and climate action. Therefore, in general, the carbon-intensive sector is not shut down completely. We derive the optimal carbon price, the equilibrium risk-free rate, and the risk premium of both assets. The risk-free rate is negatively affected by temperature, while the effect of temperature on the risk premiums depends on the type of damage specification. Climate disasters with an uncertain timing that rises with on temperature leads to a significant effect of climate change on asset prices.

JEL Codes: D81, G01, G12, Q5, Q54

Keywords: climate finance, decarbonization, diversification, carbon price, asset prices, green assets, disaster risk

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