Black's model of interest rates as options, eigenfunction expansions and japanese interest rates

Viatcheslav Gorovoi, Vadim Linetsky*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Scopus citations


Black's (1995) model of interest rates as options assumes that there is a shadow instantaneous interest rate that can become negative, while the nominal instantaneous interest rate is a positive part of the shadow rate due to the option to convert to currency. As a result of this currency option, all term rates are strictly positive. A similar model was independently discussed by Rogers (1995). When the shadow rate is modeled as a diffusion, we interpret the zero-coupon bond as a Laplace transform of the area functional of the underlying shadow rate diffusion (evaluated at the unit value of the transform parameter). Using the method of eigenfunction expansions, we derive analytical solutions for zero-coupon bonds and bond options under the Vasicek and shifted CIR processes for the shadow rate. This class of models can be used to model low interest rate regimes. As an illustration, we calibrate the model with the Vasicek shadow rate to the Japanese Government Bond data and show that the model provides an excellent fit to the Japanese term structure. The current implied value of the instantaneous shadow rate in Japan is negative.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)49-78
Number of pages30
JournalMathematical Finance
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2004


  • Area functional
  • Bond options
  • Bonds
  • CIR model
  • Eigenfunction expansion
  • Interest rate models
  • Vasicek model

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Accounting
  • Finance
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Applied Mathematics


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