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Closed Form Approximations for Spread Options

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  • Aanand Venkatramanan
  • Carol Alexander

Abstract

This article expresses the price of a spread option as the sum of the prices of two compound options. One compound option is to exchange vanilla call options on the two underlying assets and the other is to exchange the corresponding put options. This way we derive a new closed form approximation for the price of a European spread option and a corresponding approximation for each of its price, volatility and correlation hedge ratios. Our approach has many advantages over existing analytical approximations, which have limited validity and an indeterminacy that renders them of little practical use. The compound exchange option approximation for European spread options is then extended to American spread options on assets that pay dividends or incur costs. Simulations quantify the accuracy of our approach; we also present an empirical application to the American crack spread options that are traded on NYMEX. For illustration, we compare our results with those obtained using the approximation attributed to Kirk (1996, Correlation in energy markets. In: V. Kaminski (Ed.), Managing Energy Price Risk, pp. 71--78 (London: Risk Publications)), which is commonly used by traders.

Suggested Citation

  • Aanand Venkatramanan & Carol Alexander, 2011. "Closed Form Approximations for Spread Options," Applied Mathematical Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 18(5), pages 447-472, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:apmtfi:v:18:y:2011:i:5:p:447-472
    DOI: 10.1080/1350486X.2011.567120
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1080/1350486X.2011.567120
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Jing Li & Lingfei Li & Rafael Mendoza-Arriaga, 2016. "Additive subordination and its applications in finance," Finance and Stochastics, Springer, vol. 20(3), pages 589-634, July.
    2. Tommaso Paletta & Arturo Leccadito & Radu Tunaru, 2013. "Pricing and Hedging Basket Options with Exact Moment Matching," Papers 1312.4443, arXiv.org.
    3. Andrew Ang & Bingxu Chen & Suresh Sundaresan, 2013. "Liability Investment with Downside Risk," NBER Working Papers 19030, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Elisa Alòs & Jorge A. León, 2013. "On the closed-form approximation of short-time random strike options," Economics Working Papers 1347, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
    5. Juan Arismendi, 2014. "A Multi-Asset Option Approximation for General Stochastic Processes," ICMA Centre Discussion Papers in Finance icma-dp2014-03, Henley Business School, Reading University.
    6. Lorenz Schneider & Bertrand Tavin, 2014. "From the Samuelson Volatility Effect to a Samuelson Correlation Effect: Evidence from Crude Oil Calendar Spread Options," Papers 1401.7913, arXiv.org, revised Feb 2015.
    7. Caldana, Ruggero & Fusai, Gianluca, 2013. "A general closed-form spread option pricing formula," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(12), pages 4893-4906.

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