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Leverage Bubble

Listed author(s):
  • Wanfeng Yan
  • Ryan Woodard
  • Didier Sornette

Leverage is strongly related to liquidity in a market and lack of liquidity is considered a cause and/or consequence of the recent financial crisis. A repurchase agreement is a financial instrument where a security is sold simultaneously with an agreement to buy it back at a later date. Repurchase agreements (repos) market size is a very important element in calculating the overall leverage in a financial market. Therefore, studying the behavior of repos market size can help to understand a process that can contribute to the birth of a financial crisis. We hypothesize that herding behavior among large investors led to massive over-leveraging through the use of repos, resulting in a bubble (built up over the previous years) and subsequent crash in this market in early 2008. We use the Johansen-Ledoit-Sornette (JLS) model of rational expectation bubbles and behavioral finance to study the dynamics of the repo market that led to the crash. The JLS model qualifies a bubble by the presence of characteristic patterns in the price dynamics, called log-periodic power law (LPPL) behavior. We show that there was significant LPPL behavior in the market before that crash and that the predicted range of times predicted by the model for the end of the bubble is consistent with the observations.

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File URL: http://arxiv.org/pdf/1011.0458
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Paper provided by arXiv.org in its series Papers with number 1011.0458.

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Date of creation: Nov 2010
Date of revision: Nov 2010
Handle: RePEc:arx:papers:1011.0458
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://arxiv.org/

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  1. Didier Sornette & Ryan Woodard & Maxim Fedorovsky & Stefan Reimann & Hilary Woodard & Wei-Xing Zhou, 2009. "The Financial Bubble Experiment: advanced diagnostics and forecasts of bubble terminations," Papers 0911.0454, arXiv.org, revised May 2010.
  2. Adrian, Tobias & Shin, Hyun Song, 2010. "Liquidity and leverage," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 418-437, July.
  3. Anders Johansen & Didier Sornette, 1999. "Critical Crashes," Papers cond-mat/9901035, arXiv.org.
  4. Ryan Woodard & Didier Sornette & Maxim Fedorovsky, 2010. "The Financial Bubble Experiment: Advanced Diagnostics and Forecasts of Bubble Terminations, Volume III," Papers 1011.2882, arXiv.org, revised May 2011.
  5. Karl E. Case & Robert J. Shiller, 2003. "Is There a Bubble in the Housing Market?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 34(2), pages 299-362.
  6. Zhou, Wei-Xing & Sornette, Didier, 2006. "Is there a real-estate bubble in the US?," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 361(1), pages 297-308.
  7. Didier Sornette & Ryan Woodard & Maxim Fedorovsky & Stefan Reimann & Hilary Woodard & Wei-Xing Zhou, 2010. "The Financial Bubble Experiment: Advanced Diagnostics and Forecasts of Bubble Terminations Volume II-Master Document," Papers 1005.5675, arXiv.org, revised Nov 2010.
  8. Sornette, Didier & Woodard, Ryan & Zhou, Wei-Xing, 2009. "The 2006–2008 oil bubble: Evidence of speculation, and prediction," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 388(8), pages 1571-1576.
  9. Zhou, Wei-Xing & Sornette, Didier, 2008. "Analysis of the real estate market in Las Vegas: Bubble, seasonal patterns, and prediction of the CSW indices," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 387(1), pages 243-260.
  10. Jiang, Zhi-Qiang & Zhou, Wei-Xing & Sornette, Didier & Woodard, Ryan & Bastiaensen, Ken & Cauwels, Peter, 2010. "Bubble diagnosis and prediction of the 2005-2007 and 2008-2009 Chinese stock market bubbles," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 74(3), pages 149-162, June.
  11. Wanfeng Yan & Ryan Woodard & Didier Sornette, 2010. "Diagnosis and Prediction of Tipping Points in Financial Markets: Crashes and Rebounds," Papers 1001.0265, arXiv.org, revised Feb 2010.
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