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Spot and Forward Volatility in Foreign Exchange

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  • Della Corte, Pasquale
  • Sarno, Lucio
  • Tsiakas, Ilias

Abstract

This paper investigates the empirical relation between spot and forward implied volatility in foreign exchange. We formulate and test the forward volatility unbiasedness hypothesis, which may be viewed as the volatility analogue to the extensively researched hypothesis of unbiasedness in forward exchange rates. Using a new data set of spot implied volatility quoted on over-the-counter currency options, we compute the forward implied volatility that corresponds to the delivery price of a forward contract on future spot implied volatility. This contract is known as a forward volatility agreement. We ?nd strong evidence that forward implied volatility is a systematically biased predictor that overestimates movements in future spot implied volatility. This bias in forward volatility generates high economic value to an investor exploiting predictability in the returns to volatility speculation and indicates the presence of predictable volatility term premiums in foreign exchange.

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  • Della Corte, Pasquale & Sarno, Lucio & Tsiakas, Ilias, 2010. "Spot and Forward Volatility in Foreign Exchange," CEPR Discussion Papers 7893, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:7893
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    Cited by:

    1. Della Corte, Pasquale & Ramadorai, Tarun & Sarno, Lucio, 2016. "Volatility risk premia and exchange rate predictability," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 120(1), pages 21-40.
    2. Ahmed, Shamim & Tsvetanov, Daniel, 2016. "The predictive performance of commodity futures risk factors," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 71(C), pages 20-36.
    3. Buncic, Daniel & Piras, Gion Donat, 2016. "Heterogeneous agents, the financial crisis and exchange rate predictability," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 313-359.
    4. Pasquale Della Corte & Steven J. Riddiough & Lucio Sarno, 2016. "Currency Premia and Global Imbalances," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 29(8), pages 2161-2193.
    5. Francesco Ravazzolo & Marco J. Lombardi, 2012. "Oil price density forecasts: Exploring the linkages with stock markets," Working Papers No 3/2012, Centre for Applied Macro- and Petroleum economics (CAMP), BI Norwegian Business School.
    6. Hollstein, Fabian & Prokopczuk, Marcel & Wese Simen, Chardin, 2017. "The Term Structure of Systematic and Idiosyncratic Risk," Hannover Economic Papers (HEP) dp-618, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.
    7. Sarno, Lucio & Schneider, Paul & Wagner, Christian, 2012. "Properties of foreign exchange risk premiums," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 105(2), pages 279-310.
    8. Philippe Mueller & Andreas Stathopoulos & Andrea Vedolin, "undated". "International Correlation Risk," FMG Discussion Papers dp716, Financial Markets Group.
    9. Lombardi, Marco J. & Ravazzolo, Francesco, 2016. "On the correlation between commodity and equity returns: Implications for portfolio allocation," Journal of Commodity Markets, Elsevier, vol. 2(1), pages 45-57.
    10. repec:eee:jfinec:v:124:y:2017:i:2:p:415-440 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Cenedese, Gino & Sarno, Lucio & Tsiakas, Ilias, 2014. "Foreign exchange risk and the predictability of carry trade returns," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 302-313.
    12. Theophilos Papadimitriou & Periklis Gogas & Vasilios Plakandaras, 2016. "Testing Exchange Rate Models in a Small Open Economy: an SVR Approach," Bulletin of Applied Economics, Risk Market Journals, vol. 3(2), pages 9-29.
    13. Jurek, Jakub W., 2014. "Crash-neutral currency carry trades," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 113(3), pages 325-347.
    14. Carol Osler, 2012. "Market Microstructure and the Profitability of Currency Trading," Working Papers 48, Brandeis University, Department of Economics and International Businesss School.
    15. Ahmed, Shamim & Liu, Xiaoquan & Valente, Giorgio, 2016. "Can currency-based risk factors help forecast exchange rates?," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 75-97.
    16. Huang, Huichou & MacDonald, Ronald & Zhao, Yang, 2012. "Global Currency Misalignments, Crash Sensitivity, and Downside Insurance Costs," MPRA Paper 53745, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 18 Nov 2013.
    17. Jiahan Li & Ilias Tsiakas & Wei Wang, 2015. "Predicting Exchange Rates Out of Sample: Can Economic Fundamentals Beat the Random Walk?," Journal of Financial Econometrics, Society for Financial Econometrics, vol. 13(2), pages 293-341.
    18. Juan M. Londono & Hao Zhou, 2012. "Variance risk premiums and the forward premium puzzle," International Finance Discussion Papers 1068, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    19. Papadimitriou, Theophilos & Gogas, Periklis & Plakandaras, Vasilios, 2013. "Forecasting the NOK/USD Exchange Rate with Machine Learning Techniques," DUTH Research Papers in Economics 5-2013, Democritus University of Thrace, Department of Economics.
    20. Wang, Kai-Li & Fawson, Christopher & Chen, Mei-Ling & Wu, An-Chi, 2014. "Characterizing information flows among spot, deliverable forward and non-deliverable forward exchange rate markets: A cross-country comparison," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 27(C), pages 115-137.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Foreign Exchange; Forward Volatility Agreement; Implied Volatility; Unbiasedness; Volatility Speculation;

    JEL classification:

    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange
    • F37 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Finance Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications
    • G10 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - General (includes Measurement and Data)
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions

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