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Animal Spirits in the Euro Area Sovereign CDS Market

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  • Blommestein, Hans J.
  • Eijffinger, Sylvester C W
  • Qian, Zongxin

Abstract

We study the determinants for the sovereign credit default swap (CDS) spreads of five Euro-area countries (Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Spain) in the post-Lehman-Brothers period. We find that there are regime switches in the process of sovereign CDS spread changes. We consider three alternative empirical hypotheses associated with regime switches. Under the first hypothesis, there are rational sunspot equilibria. Under the second hypothesis, there is a unique fundamental equilibrium and the regime switching is caused by changes in policy makers' preferences. The third hypothesis relaxes the rational expectations assumption. Under this hypothesis, indicators of the market fundamentals are not always precise. They are better indicators if cognitive biases are small and the rational expectations economy is a good approximation for reality. However, if market uncertainties enlarge the cognitive biases, the market-based indicators of fundamentals are no longer precise. In this case, they are not useful for CDS pricing. We find that the first two hypotheses are difficult to fit the data and the third hypothesis provides a good explanation for the sovereign CDS spread dynamics in our sample.

Suggested Citation

  • Blommestein, Hans J. & Eijffinger, Sylvester C W & Qian, Zongxin, 2012. "Animal Spirits in the Euro Area Sovereign CDS Market," CEPR Discussion Papers 9092, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:9092
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    Cited by:

    1. Zongxin Qian & Qian Luo, 2016. "Regime-Dependent Determinants of China’s Sovereign Credit Default Swap Spread," Emerging Markets Finance and Trade, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 52(1), pages 10-21, January.
    2. Boris Blagov & Michael Funke & Richhild Moessner, 2015. "Modelling the time-variation in euro area lending spreads," BIS Working Papers 526, Bank for International Settlements.
    3. Chiarella, Carl & ter Ellen, Saskia & He, Xue-Zhong & Wu, Eliza, 2015. "Fear or fundamentals? Heterogeneous beliefs in the European sovereign CDS market," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 19-34.
    4. Zaghini, Andrea, 2016. "Fragmentation and heterogeneity in the euro-area corporate bond market: Back to normal?," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 23(C), pages 51-61.
    5. Cimadomo, Jacopo & Claeys, Peter & Poplawski-Ribeiro, Marcos, 2016. "How do experts forecast sovereign spreads?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 216-235.
    6. Camba-Méndez, Gonzalo & Serwa, Dobromił, 2016. "Market perception of sovereign credit risk in the euro area during the financial crisis," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 168-189.
    7. Mili, Mehdi, 2019. "The impact of tradeoff between risk and return on mean reversion in sovereign CDS markets," Research in International Business and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 187-200.
    8. Hans J. Blommestein, 2012. "The Debate over Sovereign Risk, Safe Assets, and the Risk-Free Rate: What are the Implications for Sovereign Issuers?," Ekonomi-tek - International Economics Journal, Turkish Economic Association, vol. 1(3), pages 55-70, September.
    9. Claeys, Peter & Cimadomo, Jacopo & Poplawski Ribeiro, Marcos, 2014. "How do financial institutions forecast sovereign spreads?," Working Paper Series 1750, European Central Bank.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Animal spirit; Euro; sovereign CDS;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F34 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Lending and Debt Problems
    • G15 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - International Financial Markets
    • P34 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Institutions and Their Transitions - - - Finance

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