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A margin scheme that advises on when to change required margin

  • Lam, Kin
  • Yu, P.L.H.
  • Lee, P.H.

The purpose of a margin requirement is to protect a clearinghouse from members' defaults resulting from big losses due to adverse movement of futures prices. To decide on how much a margin is required, a clearinghouse may refer to a benchmark margin defined as a constant multiple of the forecasted volatility. However, a benchmark margin only advises on a desirable margin level. It gives no advice on whether a clearinghouse should alter existing required margin. This paper proposes a margin scheme that can advise on when to change the required margin and if a change is recommended, to what level it should be changed. The proposed margin scheme can be devised so that the coverage probability and change frequency are controlled at target levels deemed appropriate by the clearinghouse. The proposed margin scheme needs a volatility forecast as input. This paper shows that among a large number of volatility forecasts, implied volatility gives the best results. This confirms a conjecture that implied volatility may have more information content than other volatility forecasts as far as margin setting is concerned.

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File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0377-2217(10)00347-4
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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Journal of Operational Research.

Volume (Year): 207 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (November)
Pages: 524-530

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ejores:v:207:y:2010:i:1:p:524-530
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eor

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  1. Taylor, Stephen J. & Xu, Xinzhong, 1997. "The incremental volatility information in one million foreign exchange quotations," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 4(4), pages 317-340, December.
  2. Cotter, John, 2001. "Margin exceedences for European stock index futures using extreme value theory," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(8), pages 1475-1502, August.
  3. Mark J. Warshawsky & Earnhart Dietrich & assistant, 1989. "The adequacy and consistency of margin requirements in the markets for stocks and derivative products," Staff Studies 158, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  4. Anderson, Torben G. & Bollerslev, Tim & Diebold, Francis X. & Labys, Paul, 2002. "Modeling and Forecasting Realized Volatility," Working Papers 02-12, Duke University, Department of Economics.
  5. Kin Lam & Chor‐Yiu Sin & Rico Leung, 2004. "A theoretical framework to evaluate different margin‐setting methodologies," Journal of Futures Markets, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(2), pages 117-145, 02.
  6. Dacorogna, Michael M. & Muller, Ulrich A. & Nagler, Robert J. & Olsen, Richard B. & Pictet, Olivier V., 1993. "A geographical model for the daily and weekly seasonal volatility in the foreign exchange market," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 12(4), pages 413-438, August.
  7. G. Geoffrey Booth & John Paul Broussard & Teppo Martikainen & Vesa Puttonen, 1997. "Prudent Margin Levels in the Finnish Stock Index Futures Market," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 43(8), pages 1177-1188, August.
  8. G. Booth & John Broussard, 1998. "Setting NYSE Circuit Breaker Triggers," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 13(3), pages 187-204, June.
  9. Bernanke, Ben S, 1990. "Clearing and Settlement during the Crash," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 3(1), pages 133-51.
  10. Fleming, Jeff & Kirby, Chris & Ostdiek, Barbara, 2003. "The economic value of volatility timing using "realized" volatility," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(3), pages 473-509, March.
  11. George W. Fenn & Paul Kupiec, 1993. "Prudential margin policy in a futures‐style settlement system," Journal of Futures Markets, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(4), pages 389-408, 06.
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