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Do oil prices respond to real interest rates?

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  • Arora, Vipin
  • Tanner, Matthew

Abstract

We show that the robustness of an inverse relationship between the real interest rate and real oil price depends crucially on how the real interest rate is calculated, and the time-frame of the sample. Consistent with earlier studies, we find that the oil price falls with an unexpected rise in either U.S. or international ex-ante real interest rates. When the ex-post real interest rate is used, the oil price only falls with rises to short-term rates (3months or less). Additionally, the response of the oil price to long-term ex-ante real interest rates must include the period through the mid-2000s for the inverse relationship to appear. In contrast, the oil price consistently falls with unexpected rises in short-term real interest rates throughout the entire sample. We draw two conclusions from the results. The first is that the oil price is consistently responsive to short-term U.S. and international real interest rates, underlying the importance of storage. Second, oil prices have become more responsive to long-term real interest rates over time.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Energy Economics.

Volume (Year): 36 (2013)
Issue (Month): C ()
Pages: 546-555

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Handle: RePEc:eee:eneeco:v:36:y:2013:i:c:p:546-555

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eneco

Related research

Keywords: Oil price; Real interest rate; VAR; Hotelling; Storage;

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References

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  1. Vipin Arora, 2011. "Asset Value, Interest Rates and Oil Price Volatility," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 87(s1), pages 45-55, 09.
  2. Ron Alquist & Lutz Kilian & Robert J. Vigfusson, 2011. "Forecasting the price of oil," International Finance Discussion Papers 1022, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  3. Ansgar Belke & Ingo G. Bordon & Torben W. Hendricks, 2009. "Global Liquidity and Commodity Prices – A Cointegrated VAR Approach for OECD Countries," Ruhr Economic Papers 0102, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
  4. Hamilton, James D & Herrera, Ana Maria, 2004. "Oil Shocks and Aggregate Macroeconomic Behavior: The Role of Monetary Policy: Comment," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(2), pages 265-86, April.
  5. Shi, Shuping & Arora, Vipin, 2012. "An application of models of speculative behaviour to oil prices," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 115(3), pages 469-472.
  6. Christopher Reicher & Johannes Utlaut, 2010. "The relationship between oil prices and long-term interest rates," Kiel Working Papers 1637, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  7. Vipin Arora, 2011. "Arbitrage and the Price of Oil," ANU Working Papers in Economics and Econometrics 2011-535, Australian National University, College of Business and Economics, School of Economics.
  8. A. Anzuini & M. J. Lombardi & P. Pagano, 2013. "The Impact of Monetary Policy Shocks on Commodity Prices," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 9(3), pages 125-150, September.
  9. Q. Farooq Akram, 2008. "Commodity prices, interest rates and the dollar," Working Paper 2008/12, Norges Bank.
  10. Ke Tang & Wei Xiong, 2010. "Index Investment and Financialization of Commodities," NBER Working Papers 16385, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Margaret E. Slade & Henry Thille, 2009. "Whither Hotelling: Tests of the Theory of Exhaustible Resources," Annual Review of Resource Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 1(1), pages 239-259, 09.
  12. Bernanke, Ben S & Gertler, Mark & Watson, Mark W, 2004. "Oil Shocks and Aggregate Macroeconomic Behavior: The Role of Monetary Policy: Reply," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(2), pages 287-91, April.
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Cited by:
  1. Papież, Monika & Śmiech, Sławomir & Dąbrowski, Marek A., 2014. "The impact of the Euro area macroeconomy on energy and non-energy global commodity prices," MPRA Paper 56663, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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