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Understanding bond risk premia

Author

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  • Pavol Povala

    (University of Lugano)

  • Anna Cieslak

    (Northwestern University)

Abstract

We decompose yields into long-horizon expected inflation and maturity-related cycles to study the predictability of bond excess returns. Cycles capture the risk premium and the business cycle variation of short rate expectations. From cycles, we construct a forecasting factor that explains up to above 50% (30%) of in-sample (out-of-sample) variation of annual bond returns. The factor varies at a frequency higher than the business cycle, and predicts real activity at long horizons. It also aggregates information from different macro-finance predictors of bond returns. Our decomposition reveals why bond returns are predictable by a linear combination of forward rates or the term spread.

Suggested Citation

  • Pavol Povala & Anna Cieslak, 2012. "Understanding bond risk premia," 2012 Meeting Papers 771, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:sed012:771
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Kees E. Bouwman & Elvira Sojli & Wing Wah Tham, 2012. "Aggregate Stock Market Illiquidity and Bond Risk Premia," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 12-140/IV/DSF46, Tinbergen Institute.
    2. Shin, Minchul & Zhong, Molin, 2017. "Does realized volatility help bond yield density prediction?," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 373-389.
    3. Dockner, Engelbert J. & Mayer, Manuel & Zechner, Josef, 2013. "Sovereign bond risk premiums," CFS Working Paper Series 2013/28, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
    4. Duffee, Gregory, 2013. "Forecasting Interest Rates," Handbook of Economic Forecasting, in: G. Elliott & C. Granger & A. Timmermann (ed.), Handbook of Economic Forecasting, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 0, pages 385-426, Elsevier.
    5. Michael D. Bauer & Glenn D. Rudebusch, 2017. "Resolving the Spanning Puzzle in Macro-Finance Term Structure Models," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 21(2), pages 511-553.
    6. Dick Dijk & Siem Jan Koopman & Michel Wel & Jonathan H. Wright, 2014. "Forecasting interest rates with shifting endpoints," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 29(5), pages 693-712, August.
    7. Hou, Keqiang & Li, Xing & Li, Zeguang & Wu, Ting, 2021. "Forecasting bond returns in a macro model," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 524-545.
    8. Emanuel Kopp & Peter D. Williams, 2018. "A Macroeconomic Approach to the Term Premium," IMF Working Papers 2018/140, International Monetary Fund.
    9. Philippe Mueller & Andrea Vedolin & Hao Zhou, 2011. "Short Run Bond Risk Premia," FMG Discussion Papers dp686, Financial Markets Group.
    10. Olena Chyruk & Luca Benzoni & Andrea Ajello, 2012. "Core and `Crust': Consumer Prices and the Term Structure of Interest Rates," 2012 Meeting Papers 922, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    11. Riccardo Rebonato, 2017. "Affine Models With Stochastic Market Price Of Risk," International Journal of Theoretical and Applied Finance (IJTAF), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 20(04), pages 1-38, June.
    12. Anh Le & Bruno Feunou & Christian Lundblad & Jean-Sébastien Fontaine, 2015. "Tractable Term Structure Models," Staff Working Papers 15-46, Bank of Canada.

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