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Is the yield curve a useful Information variable for the Eurosystem?

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  • van Bergeijk, Peter A. G.
  • Berk, Jan Marc

Abstract

The focus of this paper is on the use of the yield curve in monetary policy making. Theoretical arguments and a multi-country empirical analysis with an explicit focus on the euro area suggest the need for caution in case the Eurosystem uses the yield curve as an information variable for monetary policy, because multiple theoretical explanations exist for an observed movement in the yield curve, suggesting that policy reactions cannot be prescribed unambiguously. In addition, the empirical analysis shows that, in contrast with earlier findings of, for example, Hardouvelis (1994) and Bernard and Gerlach (1996), the information content of the yield curve is fairly limited. For the individual European countries participating in the Eurosystem as well as for the euro area as a whole, the yield spread possesses only very limited information relating to future movements in the inflation rate and output growth, over-and-above the information contained in the history of the latter variables. JEL Classification: E43, E52

Suggested Citation

  • van Bergeijk, Peter A. G. & Berk, Jan Marc, 2000. "Is the yield curve a useful Information variable for the Eurosystem?," Working Paper Series 0011, European Central Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20000011
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    Cited by:

    1. Gottschalk, Jan, 2001. "Monetary Conditions in the Euro Area: Useful Indicators of Aggregate Demand Conditions?," Kiel Working Papers 1037, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    2. Viktor Kotlan, 2002. "Monetary Policy and the Term Spread in a Macro Model of a Small Open Economy," Working Papers 2002/01, Czech National Bank, Research Department.
    3. Jesús Crespo Cuaresma & Ernest Gnan & Doris Ritzberger-Grünwald, 2005. "The term structure as a predictor of real activity and inflation in the euro area: a reassessment," BIS Papers chapters,in: Bank for International Settlements (ed.), Investigating the relationship between the financial and real economy, volume 22, pages 177-92 Bank for International Settlements.
    4. Jelena Zubkova, 2003. "Interest Rate Term Structure in Latvia in the Monetary Policy Context," Working Papers 2003/03, Latvijas Banka.
    5. Duarte, Agustin & Venetis, Ioannis A. & Paya, Ivan, 2005. "Predicting real growth and the probability of recession in the Euro area using the yield spread," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 261-277.
    6. Tomáš Holub & Jaromír Hurník, 2008. "Ten Years of Czech Inflation Targeting: Missed Targets and Anchored Expectations," Emerging Markets Finance and Trade, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(6), pages 67-86, November.
    7. Javier Ordóñez & Cecilio Tamarit & Mariam Camarero, 2008. "The expectations hypothesis of the term structure in the Euro area:," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 3(3), pages 1-15.
    8. van Zandweghe, Willem & Martinez Rico, Felipe & Gottschalk, Jan, 2000. "Money as an Indicator in the Euro Zone," Kiel Working Papers 984, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    9. Fabio Moneta, 2005. "Does the Yield Spread Predict Recessions in the Euro Area?," International Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 8(2), pages 263-301, August.
    10. Andrea Nobili, 2005. "Forecasting Output Growth And Inflation In The Euro Area: Are Financial Spreads Useful?," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 544, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    11. Gottschalk, Jan, 2001. "An Introduction into the SVAR Methodology: Identification, Interpretation and Limitations of SVAR models," Kiel Working Papers 1072, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    12. Andrea Nobili, 2007. "Assessing the predictive power of financial spreads in the euro area: does parameters instability matter?," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 33(1), pages 177-195, July.
    13. Anna Piretti & Charles St-Arnaud, 2006. "Launching the NEUQ: The New European Union Quarterly Model, A Small Model of the Euro Area and U.K. Economies," Staff Working Papers 06-22, Bank of Canada.
    14. Bernardino Adão & Maria de Fátima Silva, 2001. "A New Representation for the Foreign Currency Risk Premium," Working Papers w200103, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
    15. Viktor Kotlán, 2001. "Monetary policy and the term structure of interest rates in a small open economy - a model framework approach," Macroeconomics 0110003, EconWPA.
    16. Nicoletti-Altimari, Sergio, 2001. "Does money lead inflation in the euro area?," Working Paper Series 0063, European Central Bank.
    17. SANTOS, Carlos & OLIVEIRA, Maria Alberta, 2007. "Modelling The German Yield Curve And Testing The Lucas Critique, 1975-2001," Applied Econometrics and International Development, Euro-American Association of Economic Development, vol. 7(1).

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E43 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy

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