Financial market volatility, macroeconomic fundamentals and investor sentiment

Working papers set out research in progress by our staff, with the aim of encouraging comments and debate.
Published on 16 August 2016

Working Paper No 608
By Ching-Wai (Jeremy) Chiu, Richard D F Harris, Evarist Stoja and Michael Chin

In this paper, we investigate the dynamic relationship between financial market volatility,
macroeconomic fundamentals and investor sentiment, employing a two-factor model to decompose volatility into a persistent long-run component and a transitory short-run component. Using a structural VAR model with Bayesian sign restrictions, we show that adverse shocks to aggregate demand and supply cause an increase in the persistent component of both stock and bond market volatility, and that adverse shocks to the persistent component of either stock or bond market volatility cause a deterioration in macroeconomic fundamentals. We find no evidence of a relationship between the transitory component of volatility and macroeconomic fundamentals. Instead, we find that the transitory component is more closely associated with changes in investor sentiment. Our results are robust to a wide range of alternative specifications.

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