DP15122 Fundamental Disagreement about Monetary Policy and the Term Structure of Interest Rates

Author(s): Shuo Cao, Richard K. Crump, Stefano Eusepi, Emanuel Moench
Publication Date: August 2020
Keyword(s): disagreement, heterogeneous beliefs, Noisy information, Speculation, Survey Forecasts, Term premium, yield curve
JEL(s): D83, D84, E43, G10, G12
Programme Areas: Financial Economics, Monetary Economics and Fluctuations
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=15122

Using a unique dataset of individual professional forecasts we document disagreement about the future path of monetary policy particularly at longer horizons. The stark differences in short rate forecasts imply strong disagreement about the risk-return trade-off of longer-term bonds. Longer-horizon short rate disagreement co-moves with term premiums. We estimate an affine term structure model in which investors hold heterogeneous beliefs about the long-run level of rates. Our model fits U.S. Treasury yields and the short rate paths predicted by different groups of professional forecasters very well. About a third of the variation in term premiums is driven by short-rate disagreement.