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The News Content of Macroeconomic Announcements: What if Central Bank Communication Becomes Stale?


  • Michael Ehrmann

    (European Central Bank)

  • David Sondermann

    (European Central Bank)


How do financial markets incorporate news? This paper argues that one piece of news not only has direct effects on asset prices and market volatility, but it can also alter the relative importance of other news. Studying the reaction of UK short-term interest rates to the Bank of England’s Inflation Report and to macroeconomic announcements, this paper finds support for the notion of interdependent news effects. With time elapsing since the latest release of an Inflation Report, market volatility increases, suggesting that market uncertainty rises until the central bank updates its communication. At the same time, the price response to other macroeconomic announcements becomes more pronounced, and they play a more important role in reducing uncertainty.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael Ehrmann & David Sondermann, 2012. "The News Content of Macroeconomic Announcements: What if Central Bank Communication Becomes Stale?," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 8(3), pages 1-53, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:ijc:ijcjou:y:2012:q:3:a:1

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Reint Gropp & Arjan Kadareja, 2012. "Stale Information, Shocks, and Volatility," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 44(6), pages 1117-1149, September.
    2. Kim, Suk-Joong & Sheen, Jeffrey, 2000. "International linkages and macroeconomic news effects on interest rate volatility -- Australia and the US," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 85-113, March.
    3. Refet S Gürkaynak & Andrew Levin & Eric Swanson, 2010. "Does Inflation Targeting Anchor Long-Run Inflation Expectations? Evidence from the U.S., UK, and Sweden," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 8(6), pages 1208-1242, December.
    4. Faust, Jon & Rogers, John H. & Wang, Shing-Yi B. & Wright, Jonathan H., 2007. "The high-frequency response of exchange rates and interest rates to macroeconomic announcements," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(4), pages 1051-1068, May.
    5. Michael Ehrmann & Marcel Fratzscher, 2005. "Equal Size, Equal Role? Interest Rate Interdependence Between the Euro Area and the United States," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(506), pages 928-948, October.
    6. Reeves, Rachel & Sawicki, Michael, 2007. "Do financial markets react to Bank of England communication?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 207-227, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Detmers, Gunda-Alexandra & Nautz, Dieter, 2013. "How Stale Central Bank Interest Rate Projections Affect Interest Rate Uncertainty," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79861, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    2. Detmers, Gunda-Alexandra & Nautz, Dieter, 2014. "Stale forward guidance," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 124(3), pages 358-361.
    3. Thomas Gilbert & Chiara Scotti & Georg H. Strasser & Clara Vega, 2015. "Is the Intrinsic Value of Macroeconomic News Announcements Related to Their Asset Price Impact?," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 874, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 23 Apr 2015.
    4. repec:eee:moneco:v:92:y:2017:i:c:p:78-95 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Bernd Schwaab, 2012. "Conditional probabilities and contagion measures for euro area sovereign default risk," Research Bulletin, European Central Bank, vol. 17, pages 6-11.
    6. Philip Vermeulen, 2012. "Bank dependence and investment during the financial crisis," Research Bulletin, European Central Bank, vol. 17, pages 12-14.
    7. Wolfinger, Julia & Köhler, Ekkehard, 2017. "The Draghi-Put: When unexpected words on joint liability speak louder than actions," Annual Conference 2017 (Vienna): Alternative Structures for Money and Banking 168265, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    8. Simone Manganelli, 2012. "The impact of the Securities Markets Programme," Research Bulletin, European Central Bank, vol. 17, pages 2-5.
    9. Chortareas, Georgios & Noikokyris, Emmanouil, 2014. "Monetary policy and stock returns under the MPC and inflation targeting," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 109-116.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • E43 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading


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