Zero-coupon interest rates: Evaluating three alternative datasets
Jareño Cebrián, Francisco
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The zero-coupon yield curve is a common input for most financial purposes. We consider three popular yield curve datasets and explore the extent to which the decision as to what dataset to use for a particular application may have an impact on the results. Many term structure papers evaluate alternative models for estimating zero coupon bonds based on their ability to replicate bond prices. However, in this paper we take a step forward by analyzing the consequences of using these alternative datasets in estimates of other moments and variables such as interest rate volatilities or the resulting forward rates and their correlations. After finding significant differences, we also explore the existence of volatility spillover effects among these three datasets. Finally, we illustrate the relevance of the choice of one particular dataset by examining the differences that may arise when testing the expectations hypothesis. In the conclusions, we provide guidance to end users in selecting a particular dataset.