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Covariance forecasting in equity markets

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  • Symitsi, Efthymia
  • Symeonidis, Lazaros
  • Kourtis, Apostolos
  • Markellos, Raphael

Abstract

We compare the performance of popular covariance forecasting models in the context of a portfolio of major European equity indices. We find that models based on high-frequency data offer a clear advantage in terms of statistical accuracy. They also yield more theoretically consistent predictions from an empirical asset pricing perspective, and, lead to superior out-of-sample portfolio performance. Overall, a parsimonious Vector Heterogeneous Autoregressive (VHAR) model that involves lagged daily, weekly and monthly realised covariances achieves the best performance out of the competing models. A promising new simple hybrid covariance estimator is developed that exploits option-implied information and high-frequency data while adjusting for the volatility riskpremium. Relative model performance does not change during the global financial crisis, or, if a different forecast horizon, or, intraday sampling frequency is employed. Finally, our evidence remains robust when we consider an alternative sample of U.S. stocks.

Suggested Citation

  • Symitsi, Efthymia & Symeonidis, Lazaros & Kourtis, Apostolos & Markellos, Raphael, 2018. "Covariance forecasting in equity markets," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 96(C), pages 153-168.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jbfina:v:96:y:2018:i:c:p:153-168
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jbankfin.2018.08.013
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Covariance forecasting; High-frequency data; Implied volatility; Asset allocation; Risk-return trade-off;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C50 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - General
    • C58 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Financial Econometrics
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates

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