We propose an Optimal candlesticK (OK) estimator for the spot volatility using highfrequency candlestick observations. Under a standard infill asymptotic setting, we show that the OK estimator is asymptotically unbiased and has minimal asymptotic variance within a class of linear estimators. Its estimation error can be coupled by a Brownian functional, which permits valid inference. Our theoretical and numerical results suggest that the proposed candlestick-based estimator is much more accurate than the conventional spot volatility estimator based on high-frequency returns. An empirical illustration documents the intraday volatility dynamics of various assets during the Fed Chairman's recent congressional testimony.
This paper provides a nonparametric test for deciding the dimensionality of a policy shock as manifest in the abnormal change in asset returns' stochastic covariance matrix, following the release of a macroeconomic announcement. We use high-frequency data in local windows before and after the event to estimate the covariance jump matrix, and then test its rank. We find a one-factor structure in the covariance jump matrix of the yield curve resulting from the Federal Reserve's monetary policy shocks prior to the 2007-2009 financial crisis. The dimensionality of policy shocks increased afterwards due to the use of unconventional monetary policy tools.