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Yield Curve

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  • Frederic S. Mishkin

Abstract

This paper provides a brief survey of the relationship between the yield curve and future changes in interest rates and inflation. The expectations hypothesis of the term structure indicates .that when the yield curve is upward sloping, future short-term and long-term interest rates are expected to rise. Empirical evidence finds that as predicted by the expectations hypothesis, yield spreads are positively correlated with future changes in short-term interest rates, particularly at long horizons. However, yield spreads are negatively correlated with next period's change in long-term interest rates, the opposite prediction of the expectations hypothesis. Empirical evidence also suggests that the yield curve has almost no ability to forecast future inflation changes for short horizons: however, at horizons of a year or greater, the yield curve contains a great deal of information about the future path of inflation.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w3550.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 3550.

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Date of creation: Dec 1990
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Publication status: published as Eatwell, John, Murray Milgate and Peter Newman (eds.) The New Palgrave Dictionary of Money and Finance. London: Macmillan Press, 1992.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3550

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  1. Robert J. Shiller & John Y. Campbell & Kermit L. Schoenholtz, 1983. "Forward Rates and Future Policy: Interpreting the Term Structure of Interest Rates," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 14(1), pages 173-224.
  2. Campbell, John Y & Shiller, Robert J, 1987. "Cointegration and Tests of Present Value Models," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(5), pages 1062-88, October.
  3. Shiller, Robert J. & Huston McCulloch, J., 1990. "The term structure of interest rates," Handbook of Monetary Economics, in: B. M. Friedman & F. H. Hahn (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 13, pages 627-722 Elsevier.
  4. Frederic S. Mishkin, 1990. "What Does the Term Structure Tell Us About Future Inflation?," NBER Working Papers 2626, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. John Huizinga & Frederic S. Mishkin, 1986. "Monetary Policy Regime Shifts and the Unusual Behavior of Real Interest Rates," NBER Working Papers 1678, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Campbell, John Y & Shiller, Robert J, 1991. "Yield Spreads and Interest Rate Movements: A Bird's Eye View," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(3), pages 495-514, May.
  7. N. Gregory Mankiw & Lawrence H. Summers, 1987. "Do Long-Term Interest Rates Overreact to Short-Term Interest Rates?," NBER Working Papers 1345, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Nelson, Charles R & Schwert, G William, 1977. "Short-Term Interest Rates as Predictors of Inflation: On Testing the Hypothesis That the Real Rate of Interest is Constant," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(3), pages 478-86, June.
  9. Modigliani, Franco & Shiller, Robert J, 1973. "Inflation, Rational Expectations and the Term Structure of Interest Rates," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 40(157), pages 12-43, February.
  10. Blanchard, Olivier J, 1984. "The Lucas Critique and the Volcker Deflation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(2), pages 211-15, May.
  11. Robert J. Shiller & J. Huston McCulloch, 1987. "The Term Structure of Interest Rates," NBER Working Papers 2341, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Fama, Eugene F & Bliss, Robert R, 1987. "The Information in Long-Maturity Forward Rates," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(4), pages 680-92, September.
  13. Fama, Eugene F., 1984. "The information in the term structure," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 509-528, December.
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Cited by:
  1. Ivan Paya & Kent Matthews, 2004. "Term spread and real economic activity in Korea: was the crisis predictable?," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(13), pages 797-801.
  2. Katerina Simons, 1993. "Interest rate structure and the credit risk of swaps," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, issue Jul, pages 23-34.
  3. Ravenna , Federico & Seppälä , Juha, 2006. "Monetary policy and rejections of the expectations hypothesis," Research Discussion Papers 25/2006, Bank of Finland.
  4. Juha Ilmari Seppala, 2000. "The Term Structure of Real Interest Rates: Theory and Evidence from the U.K. Index-Linked Bonds," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 0245, Econometric Society.
  5. Harald Grech, 2004. "What Do German Short-Term Interest Rates Tell Us About Future Inflation?," Working Papers 94, Oesterreichische Nationalbank (Austrian Central Bank).

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