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Has U.S. Treasury Market Liquidity Deteriorated?
The issue of financial market liquidity has received tremendous attention lately. This partly arises from market participants' concerns that regulatory and structural changes have reduced dealers' market making abilities, but also from events such as the taper tantrum and the flash rally, in which Treasury prices fluctuated sharply amid seemingly little news. But is there really evidence of a sustained reduction in Treasury market liquidity?
What's Driving Dealer Balance Sheet Stagnation?
Securities brokers and dealers (?dealers?) engage in the business of trading securities on behalf of their customers and for their own account, and use their balance sheets primarily for trading operations, particularly for market making. Total financial assets of dealers in the United States have not shown any growth since 2009. This stagnation in their balance sheets raises the worry that dealers? market-making capacity could be constrained, adversely affecting market liquidity. In this post, we investigate the stagnation of dealer balance sheets, focusing particularly on the boom and bust ...
Has Liquidity Risk in the Treasury and Equity Markets Increased?
Market participants have argued that market liquidity has deteriorated since the financial crisis. However, inspection of common metrics such as bid-ask spreads, market depth, and price impact do not show pronounced reductions in liquidity compared with precrisis levels. In this post, we argue that recent changes in liquidity conditions may best be described in terms of heightened liquidity risk, as opposed to general declines in liquidity levels. We propose a measure that shows liquidity risk has risen in equity and Treasury markets and discuss some factors behind the increase.
Has Liquidity Risk in the Corporate Bond Market Increased?
Recent commentary suggests concern among market participants about corporate bond market liquidity. However, we showed in our previous post that liquidity in the corporate bond market remains ample. One interpretation is that liquidity risk might have increased, even as the average level of liquidity remains sanguine. In this post, we propose a measure of liquidity risk in the corporate bond market and analyze its evolution over time.
Changes in the Returns to Market Making
Since the financial crisis, major U.S. banking institutions have increased their capital ratios in response to tighter capital requirements. Some market analysts have asserted that the higher capital and liquidity requirements are driving up the costs of market making and reducing market liquidity. If regulations were, in fact, increasing the cost of market making, one would expect to see a rise in the expected returns to that activity. In this post, we estimate market-making returns in equity and corporate bond markets to assess the impact of regulations.
Global price of risk and stabilization policies
We estimate a highly significant price of risk that forecasts global stock and bond returns as a nonlinear function of the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX). We show that countries? exposure to the global price of risk is related to macroeconomic risks as measured by output, credit, and inflation volatility, the magnitude of financial crises, and stock and bond market downside risk. Higher exposure to the global price of risk corresponds to both higher output volatility and higher output growth. We document that the transmission of the global price of risk to macroeconomic outcomes is mitigated by ...