IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/red/sed018/1111.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The Tail that Keeps the Riskless Rate Low

Author

Listed:
  • Julian Kozlowski

    (New York University)

  • Laura Veldkamp

    (New York University)

  • Venky Venkateswaran

    (New York University)

Abstract

Riskless interest rates fell in the wake of the financial crisis and have remained low. We explore a simple explanation: This recession was perceived as an extremely unlikely event before 2007. Observing such an episode led all agents to re-assess macro risk, in particular, the probability of tail events. Since changes in beliefs endure long after the event itself has passed, perceived tail risk remains high, generates a demand for riskless, liquid assets, and continues to depress the riskless rate. We embed this mechanism in a simple production economy with liquidity constraints and use observable macro data, along with standard econometric tools, to discipline beliefs about the distribution of aggregate shocks. When agents observe an extreme, adverse realization, they re-estimate the distribution and attach a higher probability to such events recurring. As a result, even transitory shocks have persistent effects because, once observed, the shock stays forever in the agents' data set. We show that our belief revision mechanism can help explain the persistent nature of the fall in the risk-free rates.

Suggested Citation

  • Julian Kozlowski & Laura Veldkamp & Venky Venkateswaran, 2018. "The Tail that Keeps the Riskless Rate Low," 2018 Meeting Papers 1111, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:sed018:1111
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://economicdynamics.org/meetpapers/2018/paper_1111.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Lars Peter Hansen, 2007. "Beliefs, Doubts and Learning: Valuing Macroeconomic Risk," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(2), pages 1-30, May.
    2. Paul Gomme & B. Ravikumar & Peter Rupert, 2011. "The Return to Capital and the Business Cycle," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 14(2), pages 262-278, April.
    3. repec:red:issued:18-210 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Patrick Pintus & Jacek Suda, 2019. "Learning Financial Shocks and the Great Recession," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 31, pages 123-146, January.
    5. Gauti B. Eggertsson & Neil R. Mehrotra, 2014. "A Model of Secular Stagnation," NBER Working Papers 20574, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Robert J. Barro & Jesús Fernández-Villaverde & Oren Levintal & Andrew Mollerus, 2014. "Safe Assets," NBER Working Papers 20652, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
      • Barro, Robert J. & Fern�ndez-Villaverde, Jes�s & Levintal, Oren & Mollerus, Andrew, 2017. "Safe Assets," CEPR Discussion Papers 12043, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
      • Robert Barro & Jesus Fernandez-Villaverde & Oren Levintal & Andrew Mollerus, 2017. "Safe Assets," PIER Working Paper Archive 17-008, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania, revised 10 May 2017.
    7. Bartosz Maćkowiak & Mirko Wiederholt, 2015. "Business Cycle Dynamics under Rational Inattention," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 82(4), pages 1502-1532.
    8. Marcet, Albert & Sargent, Thomas J., 1989. "Convergence of least squares learning mechanisms in self-referential linear stochastic models," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 337-368, August.
    9. Ricardo Lagos & Randall Wright, 2005. "A Unified Framework for Monetary Theory and Policy Analysis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(3), pages 463-484, June.
    10. Bernanke, B.S., 2011. "International capital flows and the returns to safe assets in the United States 2003-2007," Financial Stability Review, Banque de France, issue 15, pages 13-26, February.
    11. Veldkamp, Laura & Wolfers, Justin, 2007. "Aggregate shocks or aggregate information? Costly information and business cycle comovement," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(Supplemen), pages 37-55, September.
    12. Carvalho, Carlos & Ferrero, Andrea & Nechio, Fernanda, 2016. "Demographics and real interest rates: Inspecting the mechanism," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 208-226.
    13. Ricardo J. Caballero & Emmanuel Farhi & Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas, 2016. "Safe Asset Scarcity and Aggregate Demand," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(5), pages 513-518, May.
    14. Kristoffer P. Nimark, 2014. "Man-Bites-Dog Business Cycles," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(8), pages 2320-2367, August.
    15. Pierre Collin-Dufresne & Michael Johannes & Lars A. Lochstoer, 2016. "Parameter Learning in General Equilibrium: The Asset Pricing Implications," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(3), pages 664-698, March.
    16. Pablo D. Fajgelbaum & Edouard Schaal & Mathieu Taschereau-Dumouchel, 2017. "Uncertainty Traps," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 132(4), pages 1641-1692.
    17. Julian Kozlowski & Laura Veldkamp & Venky Venkateswaran, 2015. "The Tail that Wags the Economy: Belief-Driven Business Cycles and Persistent Stagnation," Working Papers 15-10, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, Department of Economics.
    18. Julian Kozlowski & Laura Veldkamp & Venky Venkateswaran, 2019. "The Tail That Keeps the Riskless Rate Low," NBER Macroeconomics Annual, University of Chicago Press, vol. 33(1), pages 253-283.
    19. Backus, David & Ferriere, Axelle & Zin, Stanley, 2015. "Risk and ambiguity in models of business cycles," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(C), pages 42-63.
    20. François Gourio, 2013. "Credit Risk and Disaster Risk," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(3), pages 1-34, July.
    21. Nir Jaimovich & Sergio Rebelo, 2009. "Can News about the Future Drive the Business Cycle?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(4), pages 1097-1118, September.
    22. Callum Jones & Virgiliu Midrigan & Thomas Philippon, 2011. "Household Leverage and the Recession," NBER Working Papers 16965, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    23. Lagos, Ricardo, 2010. "Asset prices and liquidity in an exchange economy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(8), pages 913-930, November.
    24. Ulrike Malmendier & Stefan Nagel, 2011. "Depression Babies: Do Macroeconomic Experiences Affect Risk Taking?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(1), pages 373-416.
    25. Adrian, Tobias & Boyarchenko, Nina, 2012. "Intermediary leverage cycles and financial stability," Staff Reports 567, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, revised 01 Feb 2015.
    26. Saki Bigio, 2015. "Endogenous Liquidity and the Business Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(6), pages 1883-1927, June.
    27. Timothy Cogley & Thomas J. Sargent, 2005. "The conquest of US inflation: Learning and robustness to model uncertainty," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 8(2), pages 528-563, April.
    28. Urban Jermann & Vincenzo Quadrini, 2012. "Macroeconomic Effects of Financial Shocks," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 238-271, February.
    29. Beaudry, Paul & Portier, Franck, 2004. "An exploration into Pigou's theory of cycles," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(6), pages 1183-1216, September.
    30. Marco Del Negro & Domenico Giannone & Marc P. Giannoni & Andrea Tambalotti, 2017. "Safety, Liquidity, and the Natural Rate of Interest," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 48(1 (Spring), pages 235-316.
    31. Gurdip Bakshi & Nikunj Kapadia & Dilip Madan, 2003. "Stock Return Characteristics, Skew Laws, and the Differential Pricing of Individual Equity Options," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 16(1), pages 101-143.
    32. Venky Venkateswaran & Randall Wright, 2014. "Pledgability and Liquidity: A New Monetarist Model of Financial and Macroeconomic Activity," NBER Macroeconomics Annual, University of Chicago Press, vol. 28(1), pages 227-270.
    33. Greenwood, Jeremy & Hercowitz, Zvi & Huffman, Gregory W, 1988. "Investment, Capacity Utilization, and the Real Business Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(3), pages 402-417, June.
    34. David Berger & Ian Dew-Becker & Stefano Giglio, 2017. "Uncertainty Shocks as Second-Moment News Shocks," NBER Working Papers 23796, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    35. Francois Gourio, 2012. "Disaster Risk and Business Cycles," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(6), pages 2734-2766, October.
    36. Simon Gilchrist & Egon Zakrajsek, 2012. "Credit Spreads and Business Cycle Fluctuations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(4), pages 1692-1720, June.
    37. Guido Lorenzoni, 2009. "A Theory of Demand Shocks," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(5), pages 2050-2084, December.
    38. Markus K. Brunnermeier & Yuliy Sannikov, 2014. "A Macroeconomic Model with a Financial Sector," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(2), pages 379-421, February.
    39. Midrigan, Virgiliu & Philippon, Thomas, 2011. "Household Leverage and the Recession," CEPR Discussion Papers 8381, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    40. Julia K. Thomas & Aubhik Khan, 2011. "Default Risk and Aggregate Fluctuations in an Economy with Production Heterogeneity," 2011 Meeting Papers 1333, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    41. John H. Cochrane, 2011. "Presidential Address: Discount Rates," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 66(4), pages 1047-1108, August.
    42. In-Koo Cho & Noah Williams & Thomas J. Sargent, 2002. "Escaping Nash Inflation," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(1), pages 1-40.
    43. Laura Veldkamp & Anna Orlik, 2014. "Uncertainty Shocks and the Role of the Black Swan," 2014 Meeting Papers 275, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    44. Lars Peter Hansen, 2007. "Beliefs, Doubts and Learning: Valuing Economic Risk," NBER Working Papers 12948, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    45. Urban Jermann & Vincenzo Quadrini, 2012. "Erratum: Macroeconomic Effects of Financial Shocks," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(2), pages 1186-1186, April.
    46. repec:ijc:ijcjou:y:2017:q:3:a:3 is not listed on IDEAS
    47. Van Nieuwerburgh, Stijn & Veldkamp, Laura, 2006. "Learning asymmetries in real business cycles," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(4), pages 753-772, May.
    48. Jonathan Eaton & Mark Gersovitz, 1981. "Debt with Potential Repudiation: Theoretical and Empirical Analysis," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 48(2), pages 289-309.
    49. Orlik, Anna & Veldkamp, Laura, 2014. "Understanding Uncertainty Shocks and the Role of Black Swans," CEPR Discussion Papers 10147, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    50. Merton, Robert C, 1973. "An Intertemporal Capital Asset Pricing Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(5), pages 867-887, September.
    51. Martin L. Weitzman, 2007. "Subjective Expectations and Asset-Return Puzzles," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(4), pages 1102-1130, September.
    52. Robert J. Gordon, 2014. "The Demise of U.S. Economic Growth: Restatement, Rebuttal, and Reflections," NBER Working Papers 19895, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    53. Gertler, Mark & Karadi, Peter, 2011. "A model of unconventional monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 17-34, January.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Julian Kozlowski & Laura Veldkamp & Venky Venkateswaran, 2015. "The Tail that Wags the Economy: Beliefs and Persistent Stagnation," NBER Working Papers 21719, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. repec:nbr:nberch:14073 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. repec:ucp:macann:doi:10.1086/700895 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Julian Kozlowski & Laura Veldkamp & Venky Venkateswaran, 2019. "The Tail That Keeps the Riskless Rate Low," NBER Macroeconomics Annual, University of Chicago Press, vol. 33(1), pages 253-283.
    5. Thomas J. Carter & Xin Scott Chen & José Dorich, 2019. "Le taux neutre au Canada : mise à jour de 2019," Staff Analytical Notes 2019-11fr, Bank of Canada.
    6. Thomas J. Carter & Xin Scott Chen & José Dorich, 2019. "The Neutral Rate in Canada: 2019 Update," Staff Analytical Notes 2019-11, Bank of Canada.
    7. repec:pal:buseco:v:54:y:2019:i:1:d:10.1057_s11369-018-0101-5 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    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
    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:red:sed018:1111. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Christian Zimmermann). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/sedddea.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.