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The Determinants of Stock and Bond Return Comovements

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  • Lieven Baele
  • Geert Bekaert
  • Koen Inghelbrecht

Abstract

We study the economic sources of stock-bond return comovements and its time variation using a dynamic factor model. We identify the economic factors employing a semi-structural regime-switching model for state variables such as interest rates, inflation, the output gap, and cash flow growth. We also view risk aversion, uncertainty about inflation and output, and liquidity proxies as additional potential factors. We find that macro-economic fundamentals contribute little to explaining stock and bond return correlations, but that other factors, especially liquidity proxies, play a more important role. The macro factors are still important in fitting bond return volatility; whereas the "variance premium" is critical in explaining stock return volatility. However, the factor model primarily fails in fitting covariances.

Suggested Citation

  • Lieven Baele & Geert Bekaert & Koen Inghelbrecht, 2009. "The Determinants of Stock and Bond Return Comovements," NBER Working Papers 15260, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:15260
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    JEL classification:

    • E43 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading

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