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Clearly Irrational Financial Market Behavior: Evidence from the Early Exercise of Exchange Traded Stock Options

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  • Allen M. Poteshman

    (Department of Finance, College of Commerce and Business Administration, University of Illinois,)

  • Vitaly Serbin

    (Department of Finance, College of Commerce and Business Administration, University of Illinois and ITG Inc. in Boston, MA.)

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    Abstract

    This paper analyzes the early exercise of exchange-traded options by different classes of investors over the 1996 to 1999 period. A large number of exercises are identified as clearly irrational without invoking any model of market equilibrium. Customers of discount brokers and customers of full-service brokers both engage in a significant number of irrational exercises while traders at large investment houses exhibit no irrational early exercise behavior. Rational and irrational exercise is triggered for discount and full-service customers by the underlying stock price attaining its highest level over the past year and by high returns on the underlying stock. Copyright 2003 by the American Finance Association.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by American Finance Association in its journal The Journal of Finance.

    Volume (Year): 58 (2003)
    Issue (Month): 1 (02)
    Pages: 37-70

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    Handle: RePEc:bla:jfinan:v:58:y:2003:i:1:p:37-70

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    Cited by:
    1. Han, Bin, 2004. "Limits of Arbitrage, Sentiment and Pricing Kernal: Evidences from Index Options," Working Paper Series 2004-2, Ohio State University, Charles A. Dice Center for Research in Financial Economics.
    2. Hsu, Yuan-Lin & Chow, Edward H., 2013. "The house money effect on investment risk taking: Evidence from Taiwan," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 1102-1115.
    3. Stulz, Rene M., 2004. "Should We Fear Derivatives?," Working Paper Series 2004-5, Ohio State University, Charles A. Dice Center for Research in Financial Economics.
    4. Mahani, Reza S. & Poteshman, Allen M., 2008. "Overreaction to stock market news and misevaluation of stock prices by unsophisticated investors: Evidence from the option market," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 635-655, September.
    5. Pool, Veronika Krepely & Stoll, Hans R. & Whaley, Robert E., 2008. "Failure to exercise call options: An anomaly and a trading game," Journal of Financial Markets, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 1-35, February.
    6. Goyal, Amit & Saretto, Alessio, 2009. "Cross-section of option returns and volatility," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(2), pages 310-326, November.
    7. Christian Wolff & Thorsten Lehnert & Cokki Versluis, 2009. "A Cumulative Prospect Theory Approach to Option Pricing," LSF Research Working Paper Series 09-03, Luxembourg School of Finance, University of Luxembourg.
    8. Sircar, Ronnie & Xiong, Wei, 2007. "A general framework for evaluating executive stock options," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 31(7), pages 2317-2349, July.
    9. Josef Lakonishok & Inmoo Lee & Allen M. Poteshman, 2004. "Investor Behavior in the Option Market," NBER Working Papers 10264, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Vincent Glode & Burton Hollifield & Marcin Kacperczyk & Shimon Kogan, 2009. "Is Investor Rationality Time Varying? Evidence from the Mutual Fund Industry," NBER Working Papers 15038, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Kyle, Albert S. & Ou-Yang, Hui & Xiong, Wei, 2006. "Prospect theory and liquidation decisions," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 129(1), pages 273-288, July.
    12. Jiang, George J. & Tian, Yisong S., 2010. "Misreaction or misspecification? A re-examination of volatility anomalies," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(10), pages 2358-2369, October.
    13. Dorn, Daniel, 2010. "Investors with too many options?," Working Paper Series 1197, European Central Bank.
    14. Bauer, Rob & Cosemans, Mathijs & Eichholtz, Piet, 2009. "Option trading and individual investor performance," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 731-746, April.

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