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Yield Curve Factors, Term Structure Volatility, and Bond Risk Premia

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  • Nikolaus Hautsch
  • Yangguoyi Ou

Abstract

We introduce a Nelson-Siegel type interest rate term structure model with the underlying yield factors following autoregressive processes revealing time-varying stochastic volatility. The factor volatilities capture risk inherent to the term struc- ture and are associated with the time-varying uncertainty of the yield curve’s level, slope and curvature. Estimating the model based on U.S. government bond yields applying Markov chain Monte Carlo techniques we find that the yield factors and factor volatilities follow highly persistent processes. Using the extracted factors to explain one-year-ahead bond excess returns we observe that the slope and cur- vature yield factors contain the same explanatory power as the return-forecasting factor recently proposed by Cochrane and Piazzesi (2005). Moreover, we identify slope and curvature risk as important additional determinants of future excess returns. Finally, we illustrate that the yield and volatility factors are closely con- nected to variables reflecting macroeconomic activity, inflation, monetary policy and employment growth. It is shown that the extracted yield curve components have long-term prediction power for macroeconomic fundamentals.

Suggested Citation

  • Nikolaus Hautsch & Yangguoyi Ou, 2008. "Yield Curve Factors, Term Structure Volatility, and Bond Risk Premia," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2008-053, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:hum:wpaper:sfb649dp2008-053
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Nath, Golaka, 2012. "Estimating term structure changes using principal component analysis in Indian sovereign bond market," MPRA Paper 39229, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Anna Cieslak & Pavol Povala, 2016. "Information in the Term Structure of Yield Curve Volatility," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 71(3), pages 1393-1436, June.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Term Structure Modelling; Yield Curve Risk; Stochastic Volatility; Factor Models; Macroeconomic Fundamentals;

    JEL classification:

    • C5 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling
    • E4 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates
    • G1 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets

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