Expectations, Bond Yields and Monetary Policy
Through explicitly incorporating analysts' forecasts as observable factors in a dynamic arbitrage- free model of the yield curve, this paper proposes a framework for studying the impact of shifts in market sentiment on interest rates of all maturities. An empirical examination reveals that survey expectations about in°ation, output growth and the anticipated path of monetary policy actions contain important information for explaining movements in bond yields. Although perceptions about in°ation are largely responsible for movements in long-term interest rates, an explicit slope factor is necessary to adequately capture the dynamics of the yield curve. Macroeconomic forecasts play an important role in explaining time-variation in the market prices of risk, with forecasted GDP growth playing a dominant role. The estimated coe±cients from a forward-looking monetary policy rule support the assertion that the central bank preemptively reacts to in°ationary expectations while suggesting patience in accommodating real output growth expectations. Models of this type may provide traders and policymakers with a new set of tools for formally assessing the reaction of bond yields to shifts in market expectations due to the arrival of news or central bank statements and announcements.
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