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Does trade matter for stock market integration?

  • Wassim Dbouk
  • Lawrence Kryzanowski
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    Purpose – Most of the credit spread literature deals with the determinants of credit spread changes for individual bonds. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the explanatory power of credit spread changes and their determinants for portfolios. Design/methodology/approach – Using ordinary least squares (OLS) regressions and monthly data from 1990 to 1997, this paper tests several new potential determinants (e.g. portfolio diversification) and expectations (and realizations) for some previously identified determinants (e.g. gross domestic product (GDP)) of credit spread changes for portfolios of financials as derived from spot curves. Findings – Strong empirical support is reported that default risk and undiversified risk are priced in credit spreads. The paper finds that forecasts for GDP and inflation are better determinants of credit spread changes than the realized values previously used in the literature, which is consistent with the notion that term structures convey expectations about future interest rates. Research limitations/implications – Interesting issues for future research include the sensitivity of the results to the use of other procedures for deriving zero-coupon spot rates, and whether forecasts of macrovariables (such as GDP) are better determinants of credit spreads for other industrial categories, such as utilities and industrials. Practical implications – The findings provide guidance for the management of risk for fixed income portfolios, for the pricing of fixed income securities differentiated by the difficulties encountered in achieving well-diversified portfolios, and for assessing the performance of credit spread portfolios managed by financial institutions. Originality/value – The empirical model, which achieves substantial explanatory power while being parsimonious, is the first to support the usage of forecasts instead of realized values in determining credit spreads, and to show that undiversifiable risk is an important component of the credit spreads of portfolios.

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    Article provided by Emerald Group Publishing in its journal Studies in Economics and Finance.

    Volume (Year): 27 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 1 (March)
    Pages: 67-82

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    Handle: RePEc:eme:sefpps:v:27:y:2010:i:1:p:67-82
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    1. Long Chen & David A. Lesmond & Jason Wei, 2007. "Corporate Yield Spreads and Bond Liquidity," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(1), pages 119-149, 02.
    2. Nelson, Charles R & Siegel, Andrew F, 1987. "Parsimonious Modeling of Yield Curves," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 60(4), pages 473-89, October.
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    4. Francis A. Longstaff & Sanjay Mithal & Eric Neis, 2004. "Corporate Yield Spreads: Default Risk or Liquidity? New Evidence from the Credit-Default Swap Market," NBER Working Papers 10418, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    7. Sarig, Oded & Warga, Arthur, 1989. "Bond Price Data and Bond Market Liquidity," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 24(03), pages 367-378, September.
    8. John Y. Campbell & Martin Lettau & Burton G. Malkiel & Yexiao Xu, 2000. "Have Individual Stocks Become More Volatile? An Empirical Exploration of Idiosyncratic Risk," NBER Working Papers 7590, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Bewley, Ronald & Rees, David & Berg, Paul, 2004. "The impact of stock market volatility on corporate bond credit spreads," Mathematics and Computers in Simulation (MATCOM), Elsevier, vol. 64(3), pages 363-372.
    10. Edwin J. Elton, 2001. "Explaining the Rate Spread on Corporate Bonds," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(1), pages 247-277, 02.
    11. Dokko, Yoon & Edelstein, Robert H, 1989. "How Well Do Economists Forecast Stock Market Prices? A Study of the Livingston Surveys," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(4), pages 865-71, September.
    12. Pierre Collin-Dufresne, 2001. "The Determinants of Credit Spread Changes," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(6), pages 2177-2207, December.
    13. Jeffery D Amato & Eli M Remolona, 2003. "The credit spread puzzle," BIS Quarterly Review, Bank for International Settlements, December.
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