Monetary Policy and Mispricing in Stock Markets
51 Pages Posted: 7 Sep 2016
Date Written: August 2016
This paper investigates whether central banks can attenuate excessive mispricing in stocks as suggested by the proponents of a "leaning against the wind" (LATW) monetary policy. For this, we decompose stock prices into a fundamental component, a risk premium, and a mispricing component. We argue that mispricing can arise for two reasons: (i) from false subjective expectations of investors about future fundamentals and equity premia; and (ii) from the inherent indeterminacy in asset pricing in line with rational bubbles. We show that the response of the excessive stock price component to a monetary policy shock is ambiguous in both the short- and long-run, and depends on the nature of the mispricing. Subsequently, we evaluate the scope for a LATW policy empirically by employing a time-varying coefficient VAR with a flexible identification scheme based on impact and long-run restrictions using data for the S&P500 index from 1962Q1 to 2014Q4. We find that a contractionary monetary policy shock in fact lowers stock prices beyond what is implied by the response of their underlying fundamentals.
Keywords: Asset pricing, bubbles, financial stability, leaning against the wind, mispricing, monetary policy, time-varying coefficient VAR, zero and sign restrictions
JEL Classification: E44, E58, E52, G12, G14
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation