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Investment strategies used as spectroscopy of financial markets reveal new stylized facts

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  • Wei-Xing ZHOU

    (East China University of Science and Technology)

  • Guo-Hua MU

    (East China University of Science and Technology)

  • Wei CHEN

    (Shenzhen Stock Exchange)

  • Didier SORNETTE

    (ETH Zurich and Swiss Finance Institute)

Abstract

We propose a new set of stylized facts quantifying the structure of financial markets. The key idea is to study the combined structure of both investment strategies and prices in order to open a qualitatively new level of understanding of financial and economic markets. We study the detailed order flow on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange of China for the whole year of 2003. This enormous dataset allows us to compare (i) a closed national market (A-shares) with an international market (B-shares), (ii) individuals and institutions and (iii) real traders to random strategies with respect to timing that share otherwise all other characteristics. We find in general that more trading results in smaller net return due to trading frictions, with the exception that the net return is independent of the trading frequency for A-share individual traders. We unveiled quantitative power laws with non-trivial exponents, that quantify the deterioration of performance with frequency and with holding period of the strategies used by traders. Random strategies are found to perform much better than real ones, both for winners and losers. Surprising large arbitrage opportunities exist, especially when using zero-intelligence strategies. This is a diagnostic of possible inefficiencies of these financial markets.

Suggested Citation

  • Wei-Xing ZHOU & Guo-Hua MU & Wei CHEN & Didier SORNETTE, 2011. "Investment strategies used as spectroscopy of financial markets reveal new stylized facts," Swiss Finance Institute Research Paper Series 11-30, Swiss Finance Institute.
  • Handle: RePEc:chf:rpseri:rp1130
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    Keywords

    trading strategies; stylized facts; Shenzhen Stock Exchange of China; investment performance; illusion of control; trading frequency; arbitrage opportunities;

    JEL classification:

    • C15 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Statistical Simulation Methods: General
    • C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods
    • E47 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications
    • G17 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Financial Forecasting and Simulation

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