IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

How arbitrage-free is the Nelson-Siegel Model?

  • Coroneo, Laura
  • Nyholm, Ken
  • Vidova-Koleva, Rositsa

We test whether the Nelson and Siegel (1987) yield curve model is arbitrage-free in a statistical sense. Theoretically, the Nelson-Siegel model does not ensure the absence of arbitrage opportunities, as shown by Bjork and Christensen (1999). Still, central banks and public wealth managers rely heavily on it. Using a non-parametric resampling technique and zero-coupon yield curve data from the US market, we find that the no-arbitrage parameters are not statistically different from those obtained from the NS model, at a 95 percent confidence level. We therefore conclude that the Nelson and Siegel yield curve model is compatible with arbitrage-freeness. To corroborate this result, we show that the Nelson-Siegel model performs as well as its no-arbitrage counterpart in an out-of-sample fore-casting experiment. JEL Classification: C14, C15, G12

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by European Central Bank in its series Working Paper Series with number 0874.

in new window

Date of creation: Feb 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20080874
Contact details of provider: Postal: 60640 Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Phone: +49 69 1344 0
Fax: +49 69 1344 6000
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Söderlind, Paul & Svensson, Lars E O, 1997. "New Techniques to Extract Market Expectations from Financial Instruments," CEPR Discussion Papers 1556, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Francis X. Diebold & Monika Piazzesi & Glenn D. Rudebusch, 2005. "Modeling bond yields in finance and macroeconomics," Working Paper Series 2005-04, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  3. Gregory R. Duffee, 2002. "Term Premia and Interest Rate Forecasts in Affine Models," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(1), pages 405-443, 02.
  4. Francis X. Diebold & Lei Ji & Canlin Li, 2006. "A Three-Factor Yield Curve Model: Non-Affine Structure, Systematic Risk Sources, and Generalized Duration," PIER Working Paper Archive 06-017, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
  5. Robert C. Merton, 1973. "Theory of Rational Option Pricing," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 4(1), pages 141-183, Spring.
  6. Björk, Tomas & Christensen, Bent Jesper, 1997. "Interest Rate Dynamics and Consistent Forward Rate Curves," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 209, Stockholm School of Economics.
  7. Andrew Ang & Geert Bekaert, 2004. "The term structure of real rates and expected inflation," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Mar.
  8. Andrew Ang & Monika Piazzesi & Min Wei, 2003. "What does the yield curve tell us about GDP growth?," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Mar.
  9. Diebold, Francis X. & Li, Canlin, 2006. "Forecasting the term structure of government bond yields," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 130(2), pages 337-364, February.
  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. Diebold, Francis X. & Li, Canlin & Yue, Vivian Z., 2008. "Global yield curve dynamics and interactions: A dynamic Nelson-Siegel approach," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 146(2), pages 351-363, October.
  12. 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.
  13. Qiang Dai & Kenneth J. Singleton, 2000. "Specification Analysis of Affine Term Structure Models," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(5), pages 1943-1978, October.
  14. Ang, Andrew & Piazzesi, Monika, 2003. "A no-arbitrage vector autoregression of term structure dynamics with macroeconomic and latent variables," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(4), pages 745-787, May.
  15. Duffee, Gregory R., 2006. "Term structure estimation without using latent factors," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(3), pages 507-536, March.
  16. Francis X. Diebold & Glenn D. Rudebusch & S. Boragan Aruoba, 2004. "The Macroeconomy and the Yield Curve: A Dynamic Latent Factor Approach," NBER Working Papers 10616, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Dong-Hyun Ahn & Robert F. Dittmar, 2002. "Quadratic Term Structure Models: Theory and Evidence," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 15(1), pages 243-288, March.
  18. Darrell Duffie & Rui Kan, 1996. "A Yield-Factor Model Of Interest Rates," Mathematical Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 6(4), pages 379-406.
  19. Ravi Bansal & Hao Zhou, 2001. "Term structure of interest rates with regime shifts," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2001-46, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  20. Vasicek, Oldrich, 1977. "An equilibrium characterization of the term structure," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 177-188, November.
  21. Nelson, Charles R & Siegel, Andrew F, 1987. "Parsimonious Modeling of Yield Curves," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 60(4), pages 473-89, October.
  22. Michiel D. de Pooter & Francesco Ravazzolo & Dick van Dijk, 2007. "Predicting the Term Structure of Interest Rates: Incorporating Parameter Uncertainty, Model Uncertainty and Macroeconomic Information," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 07-028/4, Tinbergen Institute.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20080874. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Official Publications)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.