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What Does the Yield Curve Tell us about GDP Growth?

  • Andrew Ang
  • Monika Piazzesi
  • Min Wei

A lot, including a few things you may not expect. Previous studies find that the term spread forecasts GDP but these regressions are unconstrained and do not model regressor endogeneity. We build a dynamic model for GDP growth and yields that completely characterizes expectations of GDP. The model does not permit arbitrage. Contrary to previous findings, we predict that the short rate has more predictive power than any term spread. We confirm this finding by forecasting GDP out-of-sample. The model also recommends the use of lagged GDP and the longest maturity yield to measure slope. Greater efficiency enables the yield-curve model to produce superior out-of-sample GDP forecasts than unconstrained OLS regressions at all horizons.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 10672.

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Date of creation: Aug 2004
Publication status: published as Ang, Andrew, Monika Piazzesi, and Min Wei. "What Does The Yield Curve Tell Us About GDP Growth?" Journal of Econometrics 131(1-2): 359-403, March-April 2006
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:10672
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