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The Determinants of Country Risk Premium Volatility: Evidence from a Panel VAR Model

Petra Palic (), Petra Posedel Simovic () and Maruška Vizek ()
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Petra Palic: The Institute of Economics, Zagreb, Croatia
Petra Posedel Simovic: Zagreb School of Economics and Management, Zagreb, Croatia

Croatian Economic Survey, 2017, vol. 19, issue 1, 37-66

Abstract: We use data for 24 European countries, spanning from 1994 to 2015, in order to examine how changes in macroeconomic conditions influence country risk premium volatility proxied by sovereign spreads variance. In the first part of the empirical analysis, we estimate the univariate generalized autoregressive conditional heteroskedasticity (GARCH) model in order to obtain the conditional variance of sovereign bond spreads. We show that an increase in this variance coincides with economic and financial crisis occurring either in the country or globally. In the second part of the empirical analysis, we estimate the panel vector autoregression (panel VAR) model in order to model the interplay between macroeconomic fundamentals (inflation, output gap, public debt and interest rates) and the country’s risk premium volatility. We show that overheating of the economy, along with an unexpected increase in public debt, inflation and interest rates, increase the country’s risk premium volatility. We also show that a sudden increase in the country´s risk premium volatility depresses the economy, exerts deflationary pressures on consumer prices, and is followed by a strong and permanent increase in public debt.

Keywords: sovereign bond markets; panel VAR; European Union (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C33 E44 F34 G15 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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