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On Classifying the Effects of Policy Announcements on Volatility

Giampiero Gallo, Demetrio Lacava and Edoardo Otranto

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Abstract: The financial turmoil surrounding the Great Recession called for unprecedented intervention by Central Banks: unconventional policies affected various areas in the economy, including stock market volatility. In order to evaluate such effects, by including Markov Switching dynamics within a recent Multiplicative Error Model, we propose a model--based classification of the dates of a Central Bank's announcements to distinguish the cases where the announcement implies an increase or a decrease in volatility, or no effect. In detail, we propose two smoothed probability--based classification methods, obtained as a by--product of the model estimation, which provide very similar results to those coming from a classical k--means clustering procedure. The application on four Eurozone market volatility series shows a successful classification of 144 European Central Bank announcements.

Date: 2020-11, Revised 2021-02
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