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Ambiguity Aversion and the Term Structure of Interest Rates

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  • Patrick Gagliardini
  • Paolo Porchia
  • Fabio Trojani

Abstract

This paper studies the term structure implications of a simple structural model in which the representative agent displays ambiguity aversion, modeled by Multiple Priors Recursive Utility. Bond excess returns reflect a premium for ambiguity, which is observationally distinct from the risk premium of affine yield curve models. The ambiguity premium can be large even in the simplest log-utility setting and is also nonzero for stochastic factors that have a zero risk premium. A calibrated low-dimensional two-factor model with ambiguity is able to reproduce the deviations from the expectations hypothesis documented in the literature, without modifying in a substantial way the nonlinear mean-reversion dynamics of the short interest rate. Moreover, the model does not imply any apparent trade-off between fitting the first and second moments of the yield curve. The Author 2008. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Society for Financial Studies. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oxfordjournals.org., Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Patrick Gagliardini & Paolo Porchia & Fabio Trojani, 2009. "Ambiguity Aversion and the Term Structure of Interest Rates," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 22(10), pages 4157-4188, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:rfinst:v:22:y:2009:i:10:p:4157-4188
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Horváth, Ferenc, 2017. "Essays on robust asset pricing," Other publications TiSEM e54d7b33-1f27-4b0e-9f84-f, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    2. Hening Liu, 2011. "Dynamic portfolio choice under ambiguity and regime switching mean returns," Post-Print hal-00781344, HAL.
    3. Boyarchenko, Nina, 2012. "Ambiguity shifts and the 2007–2008 financial crisis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(5), pages 493-507.
    4. Isaac Kleshchelski & Nicolas Vincent, 2007. "Robust Equilibrium Yield Curves," Cahiers de recherche 08-02, HEC Montréal, Institut d'économie appliquée.
    5. Massimo Guidolin & Francesca Rinaldi, 2013. "Ambiguity in asset pricing and portfolio choice: a review of the literature," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 74(2), pages 183-217, February.
    6. Gonçalo Faria & João Correia-da-Silva, 2014. "A closed-form solution for options with ambiguity about stochastic volatility," Review of Derivatives Research, Springer, vol. 17(2), pages 125-159, July.
    7. Larry G. Epstein & Martin Schneider, 2010. "Ambiguity and Asset Markets," Annual Review of Financial Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 2(1), pages 315-346, December.
    8. Guo, Liang, 2013. "Determinants of credit spreads: The role of ambiguity and information uncertainty," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 279-297.
    9. Li, Jing, 2018. "Essays on model uncertainty in financial models," Other publications TiSEM 202cd910-7ef1-4db4-94ae-d, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    10. Dariusz Zawisza, 2016. "Smooth solutions to discounted reward control problems with unbounded discount rate and financial applications," Papers 1602.00899, arXiv.org, revised Feb 2016.
    11. Agarwal, Vikas & Arisoy, Y. Eser & Naik, Narayan Y., 2017. "Volatility of aggregate volatility and hedge fund returns," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 125(3), pages 491-510.
    12. Gonçalo Faria & João Correia-da-Silva, 2012. "The price of risk and ambiguity in an intertemporal general equilibrium model of asset prices," Annals of Finance, Springer, vol. 8(4), pages 507-531, November.
    13. Gonçalo Faria & João Correia-da-Silva, 2016. "Is stochastic volatility relevant for dynamic portfolio choice under ambiguity?," The European Journal of Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(7), pages 601-626, May.
    14. Eduardo Corso, 2015. "Ambiguity and portfolio decisions," BCRA Working Paper Series 201567, Central Bank of Argentina, Economic Research Department.
    15. Trojani, Fabio & Wiehenkamp, Christian & Wrampelmeyer, Jan, 2014. "Ambiguity and Reality," Working Papers on Finance 1418, University of St. Gallen, School of Finance.
    16. Flor, Christian Riis & Hesel, Søren, 2015. "Uncertain dynamics, correlation effects, and robust investment decisions," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 278-298.
    17. Ulrich, Maxim, 2013. "Inflation ambiguity and the term structure of U.S. Government bonds," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 295-309.
    18. Yehuda Izhakian, 2012. "Capital Asset Pricing Under Ambiguity," Working Papers 12-02, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics.
    19. Liu, Hening, 2011. "Dynamic portfolio choice under ambiguity and regime switching mean returns," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 623-640, April.
    20. Zhu, Xiaoneng, 2011. "Revisiting the expectations hypothesis: The Japanese term structure and regime shifts," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 63(3), pages 237-249, May.
    21. Martin Schneider, 2010. "The Research Agenda: Martin Schneider on Multiple Priors Preferences and Financial Markets," EconomicDynamics Newsletter, Review of Economic Dynamics, vol. 11(2), April.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C68 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Computable General Equilibrium Models
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G13 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Contingent Pricing; Futures Pricing

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