The Term Structure of Interest Rates in an Estimated New Keynesian Policy Model

40 Pages Posted: 3 Jun 2016 Last revised: 7 Jun 2016

See all articles by Daniel Buncic

Daniel Buncic

Stockholm University - Stockholm Business School

Philipp Lentner

Swiss Finance Institute

Date Written: June 6, 2016


We jointly estimate a New Keynesian Policy Model with a Gaussian affine no-arbitrage specification of the term structure of interest rates, and assess how important inflation, output and monetary policy shocks are as sources of fluctuations in interest rates and the term premium. To mitigate computational difficulties, we work with observable pricing factors only and utilize the computationally convenient normalization of Joslin et al. (2013b). This allows us to estimate the model without needing to restrict the parameters driving the market prices of risk. Using data for the U.S. from 1962:Q1 to 2014:Q2, we find that inflation and the output gap account for around 80% of the unconditional forecast error variance of bond yields at the short and medium end of the term structure, while monetary policy shocks account for around 20%. Our impulse response function analysis suggests that bond yields respond to macroeconomic shocks only gradually, peaking after about 4 quarters. This is due to sizable monetary policy inertia estimates in our model. At the peak of the response, inflation shocks increase bond yields by more than one-to-one, while output shocks do so by less than one-to-one, which is consistent with a Taylor type monetary policy rule. Our estimated time-varying term premium is strongly counter-cyclical. Moreover, we show that it can capture salient features of the term structure that constitute a puzzle in the expectations hypothesis, that is, LPY(i) and LPY(ii).

Keywords: Affine term structure and macro-finance modelling, New Keynesian Policy Model, risk price parameter restrictions, JSZ normalisation

JEL Classification: C51, C52, E43, E44, G12

Suggested Citation

Buncic, Daniel and Lentner, Philipp, The Term Structure of Interest Rates in an Estimated New Keynesian Policy Model (June 6, 2016). Available at SSRN: or

Daniel Buncic (Contact Author)

Stockholm University - Stockholm Business School


Philipp Lentner

Swiss Finance Institute ( email )

c/o University of Geneva
40, Bd du Pont-d'Arve
CH-1211 Geneva 4

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