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What Explains the Stock Market's Reaction to Federal Reserve Policy?

  • BEN S. BERNANKE
  • KENNETH N. KUTTNER

This paper analyzes the impact of changes in monetary policy on equity prices, with the objectives of both measuring the average reaction of the stock market and understanding the economic sources of that reaction. We find that, on average, a hypothetical unanticipated 25-basis-point cut in the Federal funds rate target is associated with about a 1% increase in broad stock indexes. Adapting a methodology due to Campbell and Ammer, we find that the effects of unanticipated monetary policy actions on expected excess returns account for the largest part of the response of stock prices. Copyright 2005 by The American Finance Association.

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File URL: http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1540-6261.2005.00760.x
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Article provided by American Finance Association in its journal The Journal of Finance.

Volume (Year): 60 (2005)
Issue (Month): 3 (06)
Pages: 1221-1257

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Handle: RePEc:bla:jfinan:v:60:y:2005:i:3:p:1221-1257
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  1. Demiralp, Selva & Jorda, Oscar, 2004. "The Response of Term Rates to Fed Announcements," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(3), pages 387-405, June.
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  9. Ray Fair, 2003. "Events that Shook the Market," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm307, Yale School of Management.
  10. William Poole & Robert H & Rasche & Daniel L. Thornton, 2002. "Market anticipations of monetary policy actions," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jul, pages 65-94.
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  14. John Y. Campbell & John Ammer, 1991. "What Moves the Stock and Bond Markets? A Variance Decomposition for Long-Term Asset Returns," NBER Working Papers 3760, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  19. Joel T. Krueger & Kenneth N. Kuttner, 1995. "The Fed funds futures rate as a predictor of Federal Reserve policy," Working Paper Series, Macroeconomic Issues 95-4, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
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  23. Goto, Shingo, 2000. "The Fed's Effect on Excess Returns and Inflation is Much Bigger Than You Think," University of California at Los Angeles, Anderson Graduate School of Management qt04f1z5hb, Anderson Graduate School of Management, UCLA.
  24. David H. Romer & Christina D. Romer, 2000. "Federal Reserve Information and the Behavior of Interest Rates," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(3), pages 429-457, June.
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  28. Ehrmann, Michael & Fratzscher, Marcel, 2004. "Taking stock: monetary policy transmission to equity markets," Working Paper Series 0354, European Central Bank.
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