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Corporate Bond Risk and Real Activity; An Empirical Analysis of Yield Spreads and Their Systematic Components

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  • Iryna V. Ivaschenko
  • Jorge A Chan-Lau

Abstract

This paper finds that the yield spread of investment-grade bonds relative to Treasuries, a proxy of default risk, predicts marginal changes in industrial production in the United States up to 12 months in the future, even upon controlling for a commonly used predictor such as the commercial paper spread. The paper also finds that systematic risk factors associated with the yield spread of investment-grade bonds to a variety of risk-free benchmarks - Treasuries, agency bonds, and AAA-rated bonds - have significant predictive content for future growth rate of industrial production at 3 to 18 months forecasting horizon, both in- and out-of-sample. Finally, a regime-switching estimation shows that the systematic risk component is also able to capture "industrial production business cycle" well.

Suggested Citation

  • Iryna V. Ivaschenko & Jorge A Chan-Lau, 2001. "Corporate Bond Risk and Real Activity; An Empirical Analysis of Yield Spreads and Their Systematic Components," IMF Working Papers 01/158, International Monetary Fund.
  • Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:01/158
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Zhiwei Zhang, 2002. "Corporate Bond Spreads and the Business Cycle," Staff Working Papers 02-15, Bank of Canada.
    2. de Bondt, Gabe, 2002. "Euro area corporate debt securities market: first empirical evidence," Working Paper Series 0164, European Central Bank.
    3. Michael Bleaney & Paul Mizen & Veronica Veleanu, "undated". "Bond Spreads as Predictors of Economic Activity in Eight European Economies," Discussion Papers 12/11, University of Nottingham, Centre for Finance, Credit and Macroeconomics (CFCM).
    4. Gabe de Bondt, 2004. "The balance sheet channel of monetary policy: first empirical evidence for the euro area corporate bond market," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 9(3), pages 219-228.
    5. Gross, Marco, 2011. "Corporate bond spreads and real activity in the euro area - Least Angle Regression forecasting and the probability of the recession," Working Paper Series 1286, European Central Bank.
    6. Iryna V. Ivaschenko, 2003. "How Much Leverage is too Much, or Does Corporate Risk Determine the Severity of a Recession?," IMF Working Papers 03/3, International Monetary Fund.
    7. Brown, Alessio J. G. & Žarnić, Žiga, 2003. "Explaining the increased German credit spread: The role of supply factors," Kiel Advanced Studies Working Papers 412, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    8. Saar, Dan & Yagil, Yossi, 2015. "Forecasting growth and stock performance using government and corporate yield curves: Evidence from the European and Asian markets," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 27-41.
    9. Gabe de Bondt, 2005. "Does the credit risk premium lead the stock market?," Applied Financial Economics Letters, Taylor and Francis Journals, vol. 1(5), pages 263-268, September.

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