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Three Essays in Theoretical and Empirical Derivative Pricing


Three Essays in Theoretical and Empirical Derivative Pricing

Ghanbari, Hamed (2017) Three Essays in Theoretical and Empirical Derivative Pricing. PhD thesis, Concordia University.

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The first essay investigates the option-implied investor preferences by comparing equilibrium option pricing models under jump-diffusion to option bounds extracted from discrete-time stochastic dominance (SD). We show that the bounds converge to two prices that define an interval comparable to the observed option bid-ask spreads for S&P 500 index options. Further, the bounds' implied distributions exhibit tail risk comparable to that of the return data and thus shed light on the dark matter of the divergence between option-implied and underlying tail risks. Moreover, the bounds can better accommodate reasonable values of the ex-dividend expected excess return than the equilibrium models' prices. We examine the relative risk aversion coefficients compatible with the boundary distributions extracted from index return data. We find that the SD-restricted range of admissible RRA values is consistent with the macro-finance studies of the equity premium puzzle and with several anomalous results that have appeared in earlier option market studies.

The second essay examines theoretically and empirically a two-factor stochastic volatility model. We adopt an affine two-factor stochastic volatility model, where aggregate market volatility is decomposed into two independent factors; a persistent factor and a transient factor. We introduce a pricing kernel that links the physical and risk neutral distributions, where investor's equity risk preference is distinguished from her variance risk preference. Using simultaneous data from the S&P 500 index and options markets, we find a consistent set of parameters that characterizes the index dynamics under physical and risk-neutral distributions. We show that the proposed decomposition of variance factors can be characterized by a different persistence and different sensitivity of the variance factors to the volatility shocks. We obtain negative prices for both variance factors, implying that investors are willing to pay for insurance against increases in volatility risk, even if those increases have little persistence. We also obtain negative correlations between shocks to the market returns and each volatility factor, where correlation is less significant in transient factor and therefore has a less significant effect on the index skewness. Our empirical results indicate that unlike stochastic volatility model, join restrictions do not lead to the poor performance of two-factor SV model, measured by Vega-weighted root mean squared errors.

In the third essay, we develop a closed-form equity option valuation model where equity returns are related to market returns with two distinct systematic components; one of which captures transient variations in returns and the other one captures persistent variations in returns. Our proposed factor structure and closed-form option pricing equations yield separate expressions for the exposure of equity options to both volatility components and overall market returns. These expressions allow a portfolio manager to hedge her portfolio's exposure to the underlying risk factors. In cross-sectional analysis our model predicts that firms with higher transient beta have a steeper term structure of implied volatility and a steeper implied volatility moneyness slope. Our model also predicts that variances risk premiums have more significant effect on the equity option skew when the transient beta is higher. On the empirical front, for the firms listed on the Dow Jones index, our model provides a good fit to the observed equity option prices.

Divisions:Concordia University > John Molson School of Business > Finance
Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Authors:Ghanbari, Hamed
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Ph. D.
Program:Administration (Finance option)
Date:16 June 2017
Thesis Supervisor(s):Perrakis, Stylianos
ID Code:982948
Deposited On:08 Nov 2017 20:37
Last Modified:01 Sep 2019 00:00
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