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Wolfgang Lemke

Monetary Policy

Division

Capital Markets/Financial Structure

Current Position

Head of Division

Fields of interest

Financial Economics,Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics

Email

Wolfgang.Lemke@ecb.europa.eu

Education
2004

PhD in Economics (Dr. rel. pol.) University of Bielefeld, Germany

2000

MA in Economics (Dipl.-Volkswirt) University of Bielefeld, Germany

1997-1998

Purdue University, Indiana, USA (visiting PhD programme)

Professional experience
2021-

Head of Division, ECB, Capital Markets/Financial Structure Division

2017-2021

Adviser, ECB, Capital Markets/Financial Structure Division

2011-2017

Principal Economist / Adviser (temporary), ECB, Monetary Policy Strategy Division and Capital Markets/Financial Structure Division

2007-2011

Economist, ECB, Capital Markets /Financial Structure Division and Monetary Policy Research Division

2004-2007

Economist, Deutsche Bundesbank, Economics Department, Monetary Policy and Analysis Division

2000-2004

University of Bielefeld, Assistant at the Chair of Econometrics and Statistics

Awards
2006

Dissertation Award of the Westfälisch-Lippische Universitätsgesellschaft

1997

Scholarship of the Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation

Teaching experience
2000-2004

Lectures in Empirical Economics and Time Series Analysis, Seminars in Statistics and Econometrics: University of Bielefeld

21 September 2021
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 278
Details
Abstract
This paper summarises the work done by Eurosystem staff in the context of the Strategy Review Seminar on Monetary Policy Instruments. More specifically, it focuses on the efficacy, efficiency and potential side effects of the key monetary policy instruments employed by the European Central Bank since 2014. The following main findings emerge from the analysis. First, instruments have been effective in easing financing conditions and supporting economic growth, employment and inflation. Second, considering the effective lower bound on policy rates, a combination of instruments is generally more efficient than relying on a single tool. Third, side effects have been generally contained so far, but they are found to vary over time and need to be closely monitored on an ongoing basis. Fourth, the monetary policy toolkit needs to remain innovative, diversified, and flexible, i.e. reviewed regularly to ensure that it remains fit for purpose against the backdrop of evolving financial and macroeconomic conditions.
JEL Code
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
E58 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Central Banks and Their Policies
E43 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
E44 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
E47 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications
1 June 2021
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2564
Details
Abstract
This paper provides new empirical evidence that bears on the efficacy of unconventional monetary policies when the main policy rate is negative. When a negative interest rate policy (NIRP) is deployed in concert with rate forward guidance (FG) and quantitative easing (QE), the identification of the impacts of these unconventional instruments of monetary policy is challenging. We propose a novel identification approach that seeks to overcome this challenge by combining a dense, controlled event study with forward curve counterfactuals that we construct using predictive rate densities derived from rate options. We find that NIRP has exerted a sizeable influence on the term structure of interest rates throughout maturities while, on net, the impact of rate FG has been more muted. QE explains the lion’s share of yield effects, particularly over the back end of the yield curve. We then feed these rate counterfactuals into a large-scale Bayesian VAR and generate alternative histories for the euro area macro-economy that one would likely have observed between 2013 and 2020 in no-NIRP (with or without FG) and in no-QE regimes. According to this conditional forecasting exercise, in 2019 GDP growth and annual inflation would have been 1.1 p.p. and 0.75 p.p. lower, respectively, and the unemployment rate 1.1 p.p. higher than they actually were, had the ECB abstained from using NIRP, FG and QE over the previous six years or so.
JEL Code
C32 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models, Multiple Variables→Time-Series Models, Dynamic Quantile Regressions, Dynamic Treatment Effect Models, Diffusion Processes
C54 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Econometric Modeling→Quantitative Policy Modeling
C58 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Econometric Modeling→Financial Econometrics
E50 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→General
E51 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Money Supply, Credit, Money Multipliers
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
19 December 2019
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2346
Details
Abstract
The 20th anniversary of Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) offers an opportunity to look back on the ECB’s record and learn lessons that can improve the conduct of policy in the future. This paper charts the way the ECB has defined, interpreted and applied its monetary policy framework – its strategy – over the years from its inception, in search of evidence and lessons that can inform those reflections. Our “Tale of Two Decades” is largely a tale of “two regimes”: one – stretching slightly beyond the ECB’s mid-point – marked by decent growth in real incomes and a distribution of shocks to inflation almost universally to the upside; and the second – starting well into the post-Lehman period – characterised by endemic instability and crisis, with the distribution of shocks eventually switching from inflationary to continuously disinflationary. We show how the most defining element of the ECB’s monetary policy framework, its characteristic definition of price stability with a hard 2% ceiling, functioned as a key shock-absorber in the relatively high-inflation years prior to the crisis, but offered a softer defence in the face of the disinflationary forces that hit the euro area in its aftermath. The imperative to halt persistent disinflation in the post-crisis era therefore called for a radical, unprecedented policy response, comprising negative policy rates, enhanced forms of forward guidance, a large asset purchase programme and targeted long-term loans to banks. We study the multidimensional interactions among these four instruments and quantify their impact on inflation and economic activity.
JEL Code
E50 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→General
E51 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Money Supply, Credit, Money Multipliers
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
8 July 2019
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2293
Details
Abstract
We trace the impact of the ECB’s asset purchase programme (APP) on the sovereign yield curve. Exploiting granular information on sectoral asset holdings and ECB asset purchases, we construct a novel measure of the “free-float of duration risk” borne by price-sensitive investors. We include this supply variable in an arbitrage-free term structure model in which central bank purchases reduce the free-float of duration risk and hence compress term premia of yields. We estimate the stock of current and expected future APP holdings to reduce the 10y term premium by 95 bps. This reduction is persistent, with a half-life of five years. The expected length of the reinvestment period after APP net purchases is found to have a significant impact on term premia.
JEL Code
C5 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Econometric Modeling
E43 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
E58 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Central Banks and Their Policies
G12 : Financial Economics→General Financial Markets→Asset Pricing, Trading Volume, Bond Interest Rates
11 December 2018
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2214
Details
Abstract
We assess the contribution of economic and financial factors in the determination of euro area corporate bond spreads over the period 2001-2015. The proposed multi-market, no-arbitrage affine term structure model is based on the methodology proposed by Dewachter, Iania, Lyrio, and Perea (2015). We model jointly the ‘risk-free curve’, measured by overnight index swap (OIS) rates, and the corporate yield curves for two rating classes (A and BBB). The model includes four spanned and six unspanned factors. We find that, in general, both economic (real activity and inflation) and financial factors (proxying risk aversion, flight to liquidity and general financial market stress) play a significant role in the determination of the spanned factors and hence in the dynamics of the risk-free yield curve and corporate bond spreads. Across the risk-free OIS curve, macroeconomic and financial factors are each responsible on average for explaining 30 and 65 percent of yield varation, respectively. For A- and BBB-rated corporate debt, the selected financial variables explain on average 50 percent of the variation in corporate spreads during the last decade.
JEL Code
E43 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
E44 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
30 October 2017
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2106
Details
Abstract
Starting in summer 2014, markets began to build up expectations that the European Central Bank (ECB) would embark on large-scale sovereign bond purchases. The ECB’s Public Sector Purchase Programme (PSPP) was eventually announced on 22 January 2015 and purchases started in March. Both during the run-up phase to the PSPP announcement day and for the day itself, German government bond yields declined significantly. Using an affine term structure model, we evidence that the yield declines are almost fully attributable to a decline in the term premium as opposed to the expectations component. This speaks in favour of the conjecture that the PSPP transmits to long-term yields mainly via a portfolio re-balancing channel rather than a (policy rate) signalling channel. The results prove robust against changing the number of factors in the model, the estimation sample and the estimation approach.
JEL Code
E43 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
23 January 2017
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1991
Details
Abstract
We propose a shadow-rate term structure model for the euro area yield curve from 1999 to mid-2015, when bond yields had turned negative at various maturities. Yields in the model are constrained by a lower bound, but - as a special feature of our specification - the bound is allowed to change over time. We estimate that it has first ranged marginally above zero, but has decreased to -11 bps in September 2014. We derive the impact of a changing lower bound on the yield curve and interpret the impact of the September 2014 ECB rate cut from this perspective. Our model matches survey forecasts of short rates and the decline in yield volatility during the low-rate period better than a benchmark affine model. We estimate that since mid-2012 the horizon when short rates are expected to exceed 25 bps again has ranged between 18 and 62 months.
JEL Code
C32 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models, Multiple Variables→Time-Series Models, Dynamic Quantile Regressions, Dynamic Treatment Effect Models, Diffusion Processes
E43 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
14 October 2010
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1255
Details
Abstract
We forecast recession probabilities for the United States, Germany and Japan. The predictions are based on the widely-used probit approach, but the dynamics of regressors are endogenized using a VAR. The combined model is called a
JEL Code
C25 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Single Equation Models, Single Variables→Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models, Discrete Regressors, Proportions
C32 : Mathematical and Quantitative Methods→Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models, Multiple Variables→Time-Series Models, Dynamic Quantile Regressions, Dynamic Treatment Effect Models, Diffusion Processes
E32 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Business Fluctuations, Cycles
E37 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications
Network
Macroprudential Research Network
11 December 2009
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1127
Details
Abstract
As the global banking crisis intensified in the fall of 2008, governments announced comprehensive rescue packages for financial institutions. In this paper, we put the joint response of euro area bank and sovereign CDS premia under the microscope. We find that the bank rescue packages led to a clear structural break in these premia's comovement, which had been rather tight and stable in the weeks preceding the in-tensification of the crisis. Firstly, the packages induced a decrease in risk spreads for banks at the expense of a marked increase in risk spreads for governments. Secondly, we show that in addition to this one-off jump in the levels of CDS spreads, the packages strongly increased the sensitivity of sovereign risk spreads to any further aggravation of the crisis. At the same time, the sensitivity of bank credit risk premia declined and became more sovereign-like, reflecting the extensive government guarantees of banking sector liabilities.
JEL Code
G15 : Financial Economics→General Financial Markets→International Financial Markets
G21 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Banks, Depository Institutions, Micro Finance Institutions, Mortgages
24 April 2009
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 1045
Details
Abstract
We estimate time-varying expected excess returns on the US stock market from 1983 to 2008 using a model that jointly captures the arbitrage-free dynamics of stock returns and nominal bond yields. The model nests the class of affine term structure (of interest rates) models. Stock returns and bond yields as well as risk premia are affine functions of the state variables: the dividend yield, two factors driving the one-period real interest rate and the rate of inflation. The model provides for each month the `term structure of equity premia', i.e. expected excess stock returns over various investment horizons. Model-implied equity premia decrease during the `dot-com' boom period, show an upward correction thereafter, and reach highest levels during the financial turmoil that started with the 2007 subprime crisis. Equity premia for longer-term investment horizons are less volatile than their short-term counterparts.
JEL Code
E43 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Money and Interest Rates→Interest Rates: Determination, Term Structure, and Effects
G12 : Financial Economics→General Financial Markets→Asset Pricing, Trading Volume, Bond Interest Rates
2020
Journal of Banking and Finance
  • Lemke, W. and Werner, T.
2019
Empirical Economics
  • Dewachter, H., Iania, L., Lemke, W. and Lyrio, M.
2016
Journal of Money, Credit and Banking
  • Abbate, A., Eickmeier, S., Lemke, W. and Marcellino, M.
2015
Journal of the Royal Statistical Society - Series A
  • Eickmeier, S., Lemke, W. and Marcellino, M.
2011
Economics Letters
  • Ejsing, J. and Lemke, W.
2008
Quantitative Finance
  • Lemke, W. and Archontakis, T.
2008
North American Journal of Economics and Finance
  • W. Lemke
2008
Economic Notes
  • Archontakis, T. and Lemke, W.
2008
Cambridge Journal of Economics
  • Weber, A. A., Lemke, W. and Worms, A.
2005
Applied Economics Quarterly
Estimation of Structural Econometric Models with Linear and Nonlinear Identities
  • Chen, P., Frohn, J. and Lemke, W.
2006
Springer, Lecture Notes in Economics and Mathematical Systems
Term Structure Modeling and Estimation in a State Space Framework
  • Lemke, W.
2003
Physica
Wirkungen umweltpolitischer Maßnahmen - Abschätzungen mit zwei ökonometrischen Modellen
  • Frohn, J., Chen, P., Hillebrand, B., Lemke, W., Lutz, C., Meyer, B., and Pullen, M.
2020
DNB Working Paper
  • Brand, C., Goy, G., and Lemke, W.
2005
Deutsche Bundesbank, Discussion Paper
  • Greiber, C. and Lemke, W.