Interest Rate Targeting and the Dynamics of Short-Term Rates
36 Pages Posted: 25 May 2006 Last revised: 7 Oct 2021
Date Written: February 1997
We find that in 1989-1996, when U.S. monetary policy tightly targeted overnight fed funds rates, the volatility and persistence of spreads between target and term fed funds levels were larger for longer-maturity loans. We show that such patterns are consistent with an expectational model where target revisions are infrequent and predictable. In our model, the (autoco-) variance of the spreads of term fed funds rates from the target increases with maturity because longer-term rates are more heavily influenced by persistent expectations of future target changes.
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