September 2014 issue contents
Inflation Risk Premia in the Euro Area and the United States

by Peter Hördahla and Oreste Tristanib


We use a joint model of macroeconomic and term structure dynamics to estimate inflation risk premia and inflation expectations in the United States and the euro area. To sharpen our estimation, we include in the information set macro data and survey data on inflation and interest rate expectations at various future horizons, as well as term structure data from both nominal and index-linked bonds. Our results indicate that, over the post-2004 period when index-linked bond markets were sufficiently developed in both monetary areas, inflation risk premia across various maturities had strikingly similar properties in the United States and in the euro area: their dynamics and their levels, especially over the years until mid-2011, have remained quite close to each other, even if premia appear to be subject to somewhat greater high-frequency volatility in the United States. After correcting for liquidity and inflation risk premia, long-term inflation expectations extracted from bond prices have remained remarkably stable at the peak of the financial crisis and throughout the Great Recession. For the United States, we also document a downward shift in the perceived inflation target, from approximately 3 percent until 2011 to levels closer to 2 percent following the FOMC announcement of a numerical long-term inflation goal.

JEL Codes: E43, E44.

Full article (PDF, 47 pages, 788 kb)

a Bank for International Settlements 
b European Central Bank