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Central Bank Communication or the Media’s Interpretation: What Moves Markets?

  • Scott Hendry

The goal of this paper is to investigate what type of information from Bank of Canada communication statements or the market commentary based on these statements has a significant effect on the volatility or level of returns in a short-term interest rate market. Two different text mining methods are used to extract interpretable themes from the document set. Bank FAD press release themes emphasizing the balance of risks, effects on GDP, labour, investment, and the CPI, the terrorist attacks of 2001, and the economic effects of SARS, BSE, blackouts, and other shocks all tended to significantly reduce short-term BAX market volatility. In contrast, discussions of oil prices, the Canadian dollar, the inflation projection and whether the economy is at capacity, and certain forward looking statements significantly increased volatility. Market news stories often offset the effects of the Bank’s communication statements and were much more likely to increase market volatility while the Bank reduced it. Market stories were also more likely to have significant effects the greater the difference from the Bank news they covered but could still be important when largely replicating the original information.

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Paper provided by Bank of Canada in its series Working Papers with number 12-9.

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Length: 41 pages
Date of creation: 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bca:bocawp:12-9
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  1. Gurkaynak, Refet S & Sack, Brian & Swanson, Eric T, 2005. "Do Actions Speak Louder Than Words? The Response of Asset Prices to Monetary Policy Actions and Statements," MPRA Paper 820, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Bernd Hayo & Matthias Neuenkirch, 2012. "Domestic Or U.S. News: What Drives Canadian Financial Markets?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 50(3), pages 690-706, 07.
  3. Scott Hendry & Alison Madeley, 2010. "Text Mining and the Information Content of Bank of Canada Communications," Working Papers 10-31, Bank of Canada.
  4. Christine Fay & Toni Gravelle, 2010. "Has the Inclusion of Forward-Looking Statements in Monetary Policy Communications Made the Bank of Canada More Transparent?," Discussion Papers 10-15, Bank of Canada.
  5. Michelle Bligh & Gregory D. Hess, 2006. "A Quantitive Assessment of the Qualitative Aspects of Chairman Greenspan's Communications," Computing in Economics and Finance 2006 213, Society for Computational Economics.
  6. Ehrmann, Michael & Fratzscher, Marcel, 2005. "Communication and decision-making by central bank committees: different strategies, same effectiveness?," Working Paper Series 0488, European Central Bank.
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