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A tractable framework for zero-lower-bound Gaussian term structure models

  • Leo Krippner

When nominal interest rates are near their zero lower bound (ZLB), as in many developed economies at the time of writing, it is theoretically untenable to apply the popular class of Gaussian affine term structure models (GATSMs) given their inherent material probabilities of negative interest rates. Hence, I propose a tractable modification for GATSMs that enforces the ZLB, and which approximates the fully arbitrage-free but much less tractable framework proposed in Black (1995). I apply my framework to United States yield curve data, with robust estimation via the iterated extended Kalman filter, and first show that the two-factor results are very similar to those from a comparable Black model. I then estimate two- and three-factor models with longer-maturity data sets to illustrate that my ZLB framework can readily be applied in circumstances would computationally burdensome or infeasible within the Black framework.

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Paper provided by Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University in its series CAMA Working Papers with number 2013-49.

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Length: 65 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:een:camaaa:2013-49
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  1. 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.
  2. Jens H.E. Christensen & Francis X. Diebold & Glenn D. Rudebusch, 2008. "An Arbitrage-Free Generalized Nelson-Siegel Term Structure Model," NBER Working Papers 14463, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. 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.
  4. Diebold, Francis X. & Rudebusch, Glenn D. & Borag[caron]an Aruoba, S., 2006. "The macroeconomy and the yield curve: a dynamic latent factor approach," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 131(1-2), pages 309-338.
  5. Chen, Ren-Raw & Scott, Louis O, 1992. "Pricing Interest Rate Options in a Two-Factor Cox-Ingersoll-Ross Model of the Term Structure," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 5(4), pages 613-36.
  6. Leo Krippner, 2012. "Measuring the stance of monetary policy in zero lower bound environments," CAMA Working Papers 2012-35, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
  7. Michael D. Bauer & Glenn D. Rudebusch, 2013. "Monetary policy expectations at the zero lower bound," Working Paper Series 2013-18, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  8. Leo Krippner, 2012. "Modifying Gaussian term structure models when interest rates are near the zero lower bound," Reserve Bank of New Zealand Discussion Paper Series DP2012/02, Reserve Bank of New Zealand.
  9. Durbin, James & Koopman, Siem Jan, 2012. "Time Series Analysis by State Space Methods: Second Edition," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199641178, March.
  10. Scott Joslin & Kenneth J. Singleton & Haoxiang Zhu, 2011. "A New Perspective on Gaussian Dynamic Term Structure Models," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 24(3), pages 926-970.
  11. 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.
  12. Kim, Don H. & Singleton, Kenneth J., 2012. "Term structure models and the zero bound: An empirical investigation of Japanese yields," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 170(1), pages 32-49.
  13. Black, Fischer, 1995. " Interest Rates as Options," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(5), pages 1371-76, December.
  14. Alan Brace & Dariusz G´┐Żatarek & Marek Musiela, 1997. "The Market Model of Interest Rate Dynamics," Mathematical Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 7(2), pages 127-155.
  15. 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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