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Estimation of a simple agent-based model of financial markets: An application to Australian stock and foreign exchange data


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  • Alfarano, Simone
  • Lux, Thomas
  • Wagner, Friedrich


Following Alfarano et al. [Estimation of agent-based models: the case of an asymmetric herding model, Comput. Econ. 26 (2005) 19–49; Excess volatility and herding in an artificial financial market: analytical approach and estimation, in: W. Franz, H. Ramser, M. Stadler (Eds.), Funktionsfähigkeit und Stabilität von Finanzmärkten, Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, 2005, pp. 241–254], we consider a simple agent-based model of a highly stylized financial market. The model takes Kirman's ant process [A. Kirman, Epidemics of opinion and speculative bubbles in financial markets, in: M.P. Taylor (Ed.), Money and Financial Markets, Blackwell, Cambridge, 1991, pp. 354–368; A. Kirman, Ants, rationality, and recruitment, Q. J. Econ. 108 (1993) 137–156] of mimetic contagion as its starting point, but allows for asymmetry in the attractiveness of both groups. Embedding the contagion process into a standard asset-pricing framework, and identifying the abstract groups of the herding model as chartists and fundamentalist traders, a market with periodic bubbles and bursts is obtained. Taking stock of the availability of a closed-form solution for the stationary distribution of returns for this model, we can estimate its parameters via maximum likelihood. Expanding our earlier work, this paper presents pertinent estimates for the Australian dollar/US dollar exchange rate and the Australian stock market index. As it turns out, our model indicates dominance of fundamentalist behavior in both the stock and foreign exchange market.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications.

Volume (Year): 370 (2006)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 38-42

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Handle: RePEc:eee:phsmap:v:370:y:2006:i:1:p:38-42

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Keywords: Herd behavior; Speculative dynamics; Fat tails; Volatility clustering;


References listed on IDEAS
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  1. Reitz, Stefan & Westerhoff, Frank, 2003. "Nonlinearities and Cyclical Behavior: The Role of Chartists and Fundamentalists," CFS Working Paper Series 2003/10, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
  2. LeBaron, Blake, 2000. "Agent-based computational finance: Suggested readings and early research," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 24(5-7), pages 679-702, June.
  3. Pagan, Adrian, 1996. "The econometrics of financial markets," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 3(1), pages 15-102, May.
  4. J. Bradford De Long & Andrei Shleifer & Lawrence H. Summers & Robert J. Waldmann, . "Noise Trader Risk in Financial Markets," J. Bradford De Long's Working Papers _124, University of California at Berkeley, Economics Department.
  5. Kirman, Alan, 1993. "Ants, Rationality, and Recruitment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 108(1), pages 137-56, February.
  6. Simone Alfarano & Thomas Lux & Friedrich Wagner, 2005. "Estimation of Agent-Based Models: The Case of an Asymmetric Herding Model," Computational Economics, Society for Computational Economics, vol. 26(1), pages 19-49, August.
  7. Gilli, M. & Winker, P., 2003. "A global optimization heuristic for estimating agent based models," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 299-312, March.
  8. Alfarano, Simone & Lux, Thomas & Wagner, Friedrich, 2010. "Excess Volatility and Herding in an Artificial Financial Market: Analytical Approach and Estimation," MPRA Paper 24719, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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Cited by:
  1. Jakob Grazzini & Matteo G. Richiardi, 2013. "Consistent Estimation of Agent-Based Models by Simulated Minimum Distance," LABORatorio R. Revelli Working Papers Series 130, LABORatorio R. Revelli, Centre for Employment Studies.
  2. Sato, Aki-Hiro & Nishimura, Maiko & Hołyst, Janusz A., 2010. "Fluctuation scaling of quotation activities in the foreign exchange market," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 389(14), pages 2793-2804.
  3. Aki-Hiro Sato & Takaki Hayashi & Janusz A. Ho{\l}yst, 2012. "Comprehensive Analysis of Market Conditions in the Foreign Exchange Market: Fluctuation Scaling and Variance-Covariance Matrix," Papers 1204.0426,
  4. Jacob Grazzini & Matteo Richiardi & Lisa Sella, 2012. "Indirect estimation of agent-based models.An application to a simple diffusion model," LABORatorio R. Revelli Working Papers Series 118, LABORatorio R. Revelli, Centre for Employment Studies.
  5. Guglielmo Maria Caporale & Antoaneta Serguieva & Hao Wu, 2008. "Financial Contagion: Evolutionary Optimisation of a Multinational Agent-Based Model," CESifo Working Paper Series 2444, CESifo Group Munich.
  6. Aki-Hiro Sato & Takaki Hayashi & Janusz Hołyst, 2012. "Comprehensive analysis of market conditions in the foreign exchange market," Journal of Economic Interaction and Coordination, Springer, vol. 7(2), pages 167-179, October.


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