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Author:Benediktsdottir, Sigridur 

Working Paper
An empirical analysis of specialist trading behavior at the New York Stock Exchange
I establish stylized empirical facts about the trading behavior of New York Stock Exchange specialists. Specifically, I look at the effect of future price movements, the specialist's explicit role, and the specialist's inventory levels on specialist trading behavior. The motivation for this empirical study is to infer whether the specialist behaves like an active investor who has an information advantage which he obtains while acting as a broker for other traders. If this were the case, one would expect that the specialist would engage in a profit maximizing strategy, buying low and selling high, which is opposite to the prediction of the traditional inventory model. I find that specialists behave like active investors who seek to buy stocks when prices are low and to sell when prices are high. I also find that when specialists are not performing their trading obligations of being on the opposite side of the market they are in almost 85 percent of their trades, buying low and selling high. The findings of this paper indicate that the NYSE specialist is best represented in theoretical models as a constrained profit maximizing, informed investor rather than as a zero profit trader.
AUTHORS: Benediktsdottir, Sigridur
DATE: 2006

Working Paper
Exchange rates dependence: what drives it?
Exchange rate movements are difficult to predict but there appear to be discernible patterns in how currencies jointly appreciate or depreciate against the dollar. In this paper, we study the dependence structure of a number of exchange rate pairs against the dollar. We employ a conditional copula approach to recover the joint distributions for pairs of exchange rates and study both the correlation and the upper and lower tail dependence of these distributions. We analyze changes in dependence measures over time, and we investigate whether these measures are affected by the business cycle or interest rate differentials. Our results show that dependencies are indeed time-varying. We find that foreign and U.S. recessions affect the joint dependence structure and that currencies with higher interest rate differentials tend to move less closely together, not only on average (correlation), but also when extreme events occur (tails).
AUTHORS: Benediktsdottir, Sigridur; Scotti, Chiara
DATE: 2009

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