Duality and arbitrage with transactions costs: theory and applications
Recent advances in duality theory have made it easier to discover relationships between asset prices and the portfolio choices based on them. But this approach to arbitrage-free securities markets has yet to be extended and applied to economies with transactions costs. This paper does so, within the context of a general state-preference model of securities markets. Several applications are developed to illustrate the nature of the theory and its potential to resolve a host of issues surrounding the effects of transactions costs on securities markets.
Dealers and the Dealer of Last Resort: Evidence from MBS Markets in the COVID-19 Crisis
We study price dislocations and liquidity provision by dealers and the Federal Reserve (Fed) as the “dealer of last resort” in agency MBS markets during the COVID-19 crisis. As customers sold MBS to “scramble for cash,” dealers provided liquidity by taking inventory in the cash market and hedging inventory risk in the forward market. The cash and forward prices diverged significantly beyond the difference in the quality of MBS traded on the two markets. The Fed first facilitated dealers’ inventory hedging and then took holdings off dealers’ inventory directly. The price ...
Arbitrage Capital of Global Banks
We show that the role of unsecured, short-term wholesale funding for global banks has changed significantly in the post-financial-crisis regulatory environment. Global banks mainly use such funding to finance liquid, near risk-free arbitrage positions---in particular, the interest on excess reserves arbitrage and the covered interest rate parity arbitrage. In this environment, we examine the response of global banks to a large negative wholesale funding shock as a result of the U.S. money market mutual fund reform implemented in 2016. In contrast to past episodes of wholesale funding dry-ups, ...
Teaching the Linkage Between Banks and the Fed: R.I.P. Money Multiplier
The money multiplier has been a standard concept in introductory economics classes for decades, but changes in the way the Fed implements monetary policy has made the model obsolete. This issue provides information about the linkages between the Fed and the banking system and provides teaching suggestions.
The dynamic relationship between the federal funds rate and the Treasury bill rate: an empirical investigation
This article examines the dynamic relationship between two key U.S. money market interest rates - the federal funds rate and the 3-month Treasury bill rate. Using daily data over the period 1974 to 1999, we find a long-run relationship between these two rates that is remarkably stable across monetary policy regimes of interest rate and monetary aggregate targeting. Employing a non-linear asymmetric vector equilibrium correction model, which is novel in this context, we find that most of the adjustment towards the long-run equilibrium occurs through the federal funds rates. In turn, there is ...
Empirical evaluation of asset pricing models: arbitrage and pricing errors over contingent claims
In a 1997 paper, Hansen and Jagannathan develop two pricing error measures for asset pricing models. The first measure is the maximum pricing error on given test assets, and the second measure is the maximum pricing error over all possible contingent claims. We develop a simulation-based Bayesian inference of the pricing error measures. Although linear time-varying and multifactor models are widely reported to have small pricing errors on standard test assets, we demonstrate that these models can have large pricing errors over contingent claims because their stochastic discount factors are ...
Fact and fantasy about stock index futures program trading
Since the 2007-09 financial crisis, the prices of closely related assets have shown persistent deviations—so-called basis spreads. Because such disparities create apparent profit opportunities, the question arises of why they are not arbitraged away. In a recent Staff Report, we argue that post-crisis changes to regulation and market structure have increased the costs to banks of participating in spread-narrowing trades, creating limits to arbitrage. In addition, although one might expect hedge funds to act as arbitrageurs, we find evidence that post-crisis regulation affects not only the ...
Interest on Reserves and Arbitrage in Post-Crisis Money Markets
Currently, Eurodollars and fed funds markets combined trade about $220 billion in funds daily, the vast majority of which with overnight tenor. In this paper, we document several features of these wholesale unsecured dollar funding markets. Using daily confidential data on wholesale unsecured borrowing and reserve balances, we show that foreign banks, which make up most of the trading volumes in these markets, keep around 99% of each additional Eurodollar and 80% of each fed fund borrowed as reserve balances. With these risk-free trades, banks earn the spread between interest on reserves and ...