Past Mathematical Finance Internal Seminar

24 February 2017

Speaker: Yixuan Wang
Titile: Minimum resting time with market orders
Abstract:  Regulators have been discussing possible rules to control high frequency trading and decrease market speed, and minimum resting time is one of them. We develop a simple mathematical model, and derive an asymptotic expression of the expected PnL, which is also the performance criteria that a market maker would like to maximize by choosing the optimal depth at which she posts the limit order. We investigate the comparative statistics of the optimal depth with each parameters, an in particular the comparative statistics show that the minimum resting time will decrease the market liquidity, forcing the market makers to post limit orders of volume 1.

Speaker: Marco Pangallo
Title: Does learning converge in generic games?
Abstract: In game theory, learning has often been proposed as a convincing method to achieve coordination on an equilibrium. But does learning converge, and to what? We start investigating the drivers of instability in the simplest possible non-trivial setting, that is generic 2-person, 2-strategy normal form games. In payoff matrices with a unique mixed strategy equilibrium the players may follow the best-reply cycle and fail to converge to the Nash Equilibrium (NE): we rather observe limit cycles or low-dimensional chaos. We then characterize the cyclic structure of games with many moves as a combinatorial problem: we quantify exactly how many best-reply configurations give rise to cycles or to NE, and show that acyclic (e.g. coordination, potential, supermodular) games become more and more rare as the number of moves increases (a fortiori if the payoffs are negatively correlated and with more than two players).  In most games the learning dynamics ends up in limit cycles or high-dimensional chaotic attractors, preventing the players to coordinate. Strategic interactions would then be governed by learning in an ever-changing environment, rather than by rational and fully-informed equilibrium thinking.
Collaborators: J. D. Farmer, T. Galla, T. Heinrich, J. Sanders

  • Mathematical Finance Internal Seminar
10 February 2017
Gaoyue Guo

The Skorokhod embedding problem aims to represent a given probability measure on the real line as the distribution of Brownian motion stopped at a chosen stopping time. In this talk, we consider an extension of the weak formulation of the optimal Skorokhod embedding problem. Using the classical convex duality approach together with the optimal stopping theory, we establish some duality. Moreover, based on the duality, we provide an alternative proof of the monotonicity principle proved by Beiglbock, Cox and Huesmann.

  • Mathematical Finance Internal Seminar
27 January 2017
Jan Obloj

We pursue robust approach to pricing and hedging in mathematical
finance. We develop a general discrete time setting in which some
underlying assets and options are available for dynamic trading and a
further set of European options, possibly with varying maturities, is
available for static trading. We include in our setup modelling beliefs by
allowing to specify a set of paths to be considered, e.g.
super-replication of a contingent claim is required only for paths falling
in the given set. Our framework thus interpolates between
model-independent and model-specific settings and allows to quantify the
impact of making assumptions. We establish suitable FTAP and
Pricing-Hedging duality results which include as special cases previous
results of Acciaio et al. (2013), Burzoni et al. (2016) as well the
Dalang-Morton-Willinger theorem. Finally, we explain how to treat further
problems, such as insider trading (information quantification) or American
options pricing.
Based on joint works with Burzoni, Frittelli, Hou, Maggis; Aksamit, Deng and Tan.

  • Mathematical Finance Internal Seminar
2 December 2016
Christoph Reisinger

In this talk, we present and analyse a class of “filtered” numerical schemes for second order Hamilton-Jacobi-Bellman (HJB) equations, with a focus on examples arising from stochastic control problems in financial engineering. We start by discussing more widely the difficulty in constructing compact and accurate approximations. The key obstacle is the requirement in the established convergence analysis of certain monotonicity properties of the schemes. We follow ideas in Oberman and Froese (2010) to introduce a suitable local modification of high order schemes, which are necessarily non-monotone, by “filtering” them with a monotone scheme. Thus, they can be proven to converge and still show an overall high order behaviour for smooth enough value functions. We give theoretical proofs of these claims and illustrate the behaviour with numerical tests. 

This talk is based on joint work with Olivier Bokanowski and Athena Picarelli.

  • Mathematical Finance Internal Seminar
18 November 2016
Zhenru Wang and Vadim Kaushansky

Zhenru Wang
Title: Multi-Index Monte Carlo Estimators for a Class of Zakai SPDEs
We first propose a space-time Multi-Index Monte Carlo (MIMC) estimator for a one-dimensional parabolic SPDE of Zakai type. We compare the computational cost required for a prescribed accuracy with the Multilevel Monte Carlo (MLMC) method of Giles and Reisinger (2012). Then we extend the estimator to a two-dimensional variant of SPDE. The theoretical analysis shows the benefit of using MIMC in high dimensional problems over MLMC methods. Numerical tests confirm these finding empirically.

Vadim Kaushansky
Title: An extended structural default model with jump risk
We consider a structural default model in an interconnected banking network as in Itkin and Lipton (2015), where there are mutual obligations between each pair of banks. We analyse the model numerically for the case of two banks with jumps in their asset value processes. Specifically, we develop a finite difference method for the resulting two-dimensional partial integro-differential equation, and study its stability and consistency. By applying this method, we compute joint and marginal survival probabilities, as well as prices of credit default swaps (CDS) and first-to-default swaps (FTD), Credit and Debt Value Adjustments (CVA and DVA).


  • Mathematical Finance Internal Seminar
4 November 2016
Tongseok Lim

We will introduce variants of the optimal transport problem, namely martingale optimal transport problem and subharmonic martingale transport problem. Their motivation is partly from mathematical finance. We will see that in dimension greater than one, the additional constraints imply interesting and deep mathematical subtlety on the attainment of dual problem, and it also affects heavily on the geometry of optimal solutions. If time permits, we will introduce still another variant of the martingale transport problem, called the multi-martingale optimal transport problem.

  • Mathematical Finance Internal Seminar
21 October 2016

In practice, stochastic decision problems are often based on statistical estimates of probabilities. We all know that statistical error may be significant, but it is often not so clear how to incorporate it into our decision making. In this informal talk, we will look at one approach to this problem, based on the theory of nonlinear expectations. We will consider the large-sample theory of these estimators, and also connections to `robust statistics' in the sense of Huber.

  • Mathematical Finance Internal Seminar