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Keywords:asset pricing OR Asset pricing OR Asset Pricing 

Report
Trading risk and volatility in interest rate swap spreads

This paper examines how risk in trading activity can affect the volatility of asset prices. We look for this relationship in the behavior of interest rate swap spreads and in the volume and interest rates of repurchase contracts. Specifically, we focus on convergence trading, in which speculators take positions on a bet that asset prices will converge to normal levels. We investigate how the risks in convergence trading can affect price volatility in a form of positive feedback that can amplify shocks in asset prices. In our analysis, we see empirical evidence of both stabilizing and ...
Staff Reports , Paper 178

Journal Article
Asset price bubbles

Economists use the term "bubble" to describe an asset price that has risen above the level justified by economic fundamentals, as measured by the discounted stream of expected future cash flows that will accrue to the owner of the asset. The dramatic rise in U.S. stock prices during the late 1990s, followed similarly by U.S. house prices during the early 2000s, are episodes that have both been described as "bubbles." This Economic Letter describes some research that attempts to account for the behavior of asset price bubbles.
FRBSF Economic Letter

Journal Article
A Minsky meltdown: lessons for central bankers

This Economic Letter is adapted from a speech delivered by Janet L. Yellen, president and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, to the 18th Annual Hyman P. Minsky Conference on the State of the U.S. and World Economies on April 16, 2009, in New York City.
FRBSF Economic Letter

Report
Nonparametric pricing of multivariate contingent claims

In this paper, I derive and implement a nonparametric, arbitrage-free technique for multivariate contingent claim (MVCC) pricing. Using results from the method of copulas, I show that the multivariate risk-neutral density can be written as a product of marginal risk-neutral densities and a risk-neutral dependence function. I then develop a pricing technique using nonparametrically estimated marginal risk-neutral densities (based on options data) and a nonparametric dependence function (based on historical return data). By using nonparametric estimation, I avoid the pricing biases that result ...
Staff Reports , Paper 162

Working Paper
Do actions speak louder than words? the response of asset prices to monetary policy actions and statements

We investigate the effects of U.S. monetary policy on asset prices using a high-frequency event-study analysis. We test whether these effects are adequately captured by a single factor--changes in the federal funds rate target-and find that they are not. Instead, we find that two factors are required. These factors have a structural interpretation as a "current federal funds rate target" factor and a "future path of policy" factor, with the latter closely associated with FOMC statements. We measure the effects of these two factors on bond yields and stock prices using a new intraday ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2004-66

Speech
What role for asset prices in U.S. monetary policy?

Presentation at Bradley University, Peoria, Ill. - Sept. 5, 2001
Speech , Paper 57

Working Paper
Asset prices, exchange rates and the current account

This paper analyses the role of asset prices in comparison to other factors, in particular exchange rates, as a driver of the US trade balance. It employs a Bayesian structural VAR model that requires imposing only a minimum of economically meaningful sign restrictions. We find that equity market shocks and housing price shocks have been major determinants of the US current account in the past, accounting for up to 32% of the movements of the US trade balance at a horizon of 20 quarters. By contrast, shocks to the real exchange rate have been much less relevant, explaining less than 7% and ...
Working Papers , Paper 2008-031

Report
Leverage and asset prices: an experiment

This is the first paper to test the asset pricing implication of leverage in a laboratory. We show that as theory predicts, leverage increases asset prices: When an asset can be used as collateral (that is, when the asset can be bought on margin), its price goes up. This increase is significant, and quantitatively close to what theory predicts. However, important deviations from the theory arise in the laboratory. First, the demand for the asset shifts when it can be used as a collateral, even though agents do not exhaust their purchasing power when collateralized borrowing is not allowed. ...
Staff Reports , Paper 548

Working Paper
Dynamic strategies, asset pricing models, and the out-of-sample performance of the tangency portfolio

In this paper, I study the behavior of an investor with unit risk aversion who maximizes a utility function defined over the mean and the variance of a portfolio's return. Conditioning information is accessible without cost and an unconditionally riskless asset is available in the market. ; The proposed approach makes it possible to compare the performance of a benchmark tangency portfolio (formed from the set of unrestricted estimates of portfolio weights) to the performance of a restricted tangency portfolio which uses single-index and multi-index asset pricing models to constrain the first ...
FRB Atlanta Working Paper , Paper 2003-6

Report
Betting against beta (and gamma) using government bonds

Purportedly consistent with ?risk parity? (RP) asset allocation, recent studies document compelling ?low risk? trading strategies that exploit a persistently negative relation between Sharpe ratios (SRs) and maturity along the U.S. Treasury (UST) term structure. This paper extends this evidence on betting against beta with government bonds (BABgov) in four respects. First, out-of-sample tests suggest that excess returns may have waned somewhat recently and that the pattern seems most pronounced for USTs given data on ten other previously unexamined government bond markets. Second, BABgov ...
Staff Reports , Paper 708

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