Thu, 09 May 2024
Owen Futter
Mathematical Institute

In this seminar we introduce a portfolio optimisation framework, in which the use of rough path signatures (Lyons, 1998) provides a novel method of incorporating path-dependencies in the joint signal-asset dynamics, naturally extending traditional factor models, while keeping the resulting formulas lightweight, tractable and easily interpretable. Specifically, we achieve this by representing a trading strategy as a linear functional applied to the signature of a path (which we refer to as “Signature Trading” or “Sig-Trading”). This allows the modeller to efficiently encode the evolution of past time-series observations into the optimisation problem. In particular, we derive a concise formulation of the dynamic mean-variance criterion alongside an explicit solution in our setting, which naturally incorporates a drawdown control in the optimal strategy over a finite time horizon. Secondly, we draw parallels between classical portfolio stategies and Sig-Trading strategies and explain how the latter leads to a pathwise extension of the classical setting via the “Signature Efficient Frontier”. Finally, we give explicit examples when trading under an exogenous signal as well as examples for momentum and pair-trading strategies, demonstrated both on synthetic and market data. Our framework combines the best of both worlds between classical theory (whose appeal lies in clear and concise formulae) and between modern, flexible data-driven methods (usually represented by ML approaches) that can handle more realistic datasets. The advantage of the added flexibility of the latter is that one can bypass common issues such as the accumulation of heteroskedastic and asymmetric residuals during the optimisation phase. Overall, Sig-Trading combines the flexibility of data-driven methods without compromising on the clarity of the classical theory and our presented results provide a compelling toolbox that yields superior results for a large class of trading strategies.

This is based on works with Blanka Horvath and Magnus Wiese.

Further Information

Please join us for reshments outside the lecture room from 1530.

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