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Global asset allocation in fixed income markets

  • Srichander Ramaswamy
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    Many global investors are faced with the problem of choosing an appropriate currency allocation of their assets in the capital markets. This paper addresses the asset allocation problem under the assumption that the investment universe is comprised of unhedged risk-free bonds in different countries. In general, the total return arising from holding an unhedged bond portfolio is comprised of two components. One component of the return arises from the bond price changes resulting from yield curve movements and the other component arises from exchange rate fluctuations. In this paper, bond price changes are assumed to be governed by a one factor interest rate term structure model. The return arising from exchange rate changes is extracted by modelling the evolution of exchange rates as a jump stochastic process. The jump process is assumed to occur in the volatility of exchange rate returns. This model is consistent with the empirical evidence that the volatility of currency returns exhibits GARCH behaviour. Using the models that describe the evolution of interest rates and exchange rates, the optimal portfolio allocation problem is solved in a mean-variance setting by Monte Carlo simulation. The out-of-sample performance of the portfolios selected is also presented and is compared against those obtained using other existing methods.

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    Paper provided by Bank for International Settlements in its series BIS Working Papers with number 46.

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    Length: 35 pages
    Date of creation: Sep 1997
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:bis:biswps:46
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    1. Heynen, Ronald & Kemna, Angelien & Vorst, Ton, 1994. "Analysis of the Term Structure of Implied Volatilities," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 29(01), pages 31-56, March.
    2. Peter Ritchken & L. Sankarasubramanian, 1995. "Volatility Structures Of Forward Rates And The Dynamics Of The Term Structure," Mathematical Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 5(1), pages 55-72.
    3. Vasicek, Oldrich Alfonso, 1977. "Abstract: An Equilibrium Characterization of the Term Structure," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 12(04), pages 627-627, November.
    4. Jorion, Philippe, 1985. "International Portfolio Diversification with Estimation Risk," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 58(3), pages 259-78, July.
    5. Dumas, Bernard, 1990. "Performance of currency portfolios chosen by a Bayesian technique: 1967-1985," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 14(2-3), pages 539-558, August.
    6. Meese, Richard A. & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1983. "Empirical exchange rate models of the seventies : Do they fit out of sample?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(1-2), pages 3-24, February.
    7. Heath, David & Jarrow, Robert & Morton, Andrew, 1992. "Bond Pricing and the Term Structure of Interest Rates: A New Methodology for Contingent Claims Valuation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(1), pages 77-105, January.
    8. Xu, Xinzhong & Taylor, Stephen J., 1994. "The Term Structure of Volatility Implied by Foreign Exchange Options," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 29(01), pages 57-74, March.
    9. Robert R. Bliss & Peter Richken, 1996. "Empirical tests of two state-variable Heath-Jarrow models," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, issue Aug, pages 452-481.
    10. Cox, John C & Ingersoll, Jonathan E, Jr & Ross, Stephen A, 1985. "A Theory of the Term Structure of Interest Rates," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(2), pages 385-407, March.
    11. Vasicek, Oldrich, 1977. "An equilibrium characterization of the term structure," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 177-188, November.
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