The Information Content of FOMC Minutes

53 Pages Posted: 8 Aug 2006

See all articles by Ellyn Boukus

Ellyn Boukus

Yale University

Joshua V. Rosenberg

Federal Reserve Bank of New York

Date Written: July 2006


In this paper, we analyze the information content of Federal Open Market Committee minutes from 1987-2005. We apply an objective, statistical methodology known as Latent Semantic Analysis to decompose each minutes release into its characteristic themes. We show that these themes are correlated with current and future economic conditions. Our evidence suggests that market participants can extract a complex, multifaceted signal from the minutes. In particular, Treasury yield changes around the time of the minutes release depend on the specific themes expressed, the level of monetary policy uncertainty, and the economic outlook.

Keywords: Monetary policy, minutes, transparency, Latent Semantic Analysis, computational linguistics

JEL Classification: C4, D78, E4, E5

Suggested Citation

Boukus, Ellyn and Rosenberg, Joshua V., The Information Content of FOMC Minutes (July 2006). Available at SSRN: or

Ellyn Boukus

Yale University ( email )

New Haven, CT 06520
United States

Joshua V. Rosenberg (Contact Author)

Federal Reserve Bank of New York ( email )

33 Liberty Street
New York, NY 10045
United States
212-720-6317 (Phone)
212-720-1582 (Fax)


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