Impact of Macroeconomic Announcements on Interest Rate Futures: High-Frequency Evidence from Australia
Lee A. Smales
Curtin University of Technology - School of Economics and Finance
January 6, 2012
Journal of Financial Research, Forthcoming
This paper investigates the behavior of Australian interest rate futures around the release of major scheduled macroeconomic announcements. The analysis of price volatility, returns, trading activity and bid-ask spreads finds that the adjustment to new information occurs quickly with the significant part of the reaction complete within 30-seconds. The 30-seconds immediately prior to the announcement exhibits high volatility, low levels of volume, and high bid-ask spreads. In the 30 seconds following the scheduled announcement there is strong evidence of a sharp increase in price volatility, significant positive correlation in returns, large adjusted returns and high levels of trading activity. The reaction is stronger in shorter maturity contracts. There is some evidence of price reversals occurring following this sharp adjustment. The 2007-2008 Global Financial Crisis has had a significant impact on the reaction of Australian interest rate futures to major macroeconomic announcements, with evidence of higher volatility, significantly higher returns and decreasing market activity.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 31
Keywords: Interest Rates, Futures Markets, Australia, High-Frequency, GFC, Trading Activity
JEL Classification: E44, G10, G14, G15Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: December 23, 2011 ; Last revised: June 10, 2013
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