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Ambiguous Market Making

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Abstract

This paper investigates the impact of informational ambiguity and attitude to it on security prices. Attention is focused on equilibria in which a market maker has an ambiguity in his probability assessment. We show that the equilibrium ambiguous bid-ask spread can be decomposed into the probabilistic spread and an “ambiguity premium/discount” component characterizing the ambiguity aversion/seeking of the market maker. In particular, for a sufficiently ambiguity averse market maker, the bid-ask spread widens with the informational ambiguity of the market maker, which provides an explanation to drying liquidity and price inefficiency during financial turmoils. An extension to different trade sizes shows that informed traders are more likely to trade large orders when there is a major ambiguous shock to the economy.

Suggested Citation

  • Nihad Aliyev & Xue-Zhong He, 2017. "Ambiguous Market Making," Research Paper Series 383, Quantitative Finance Research Centre, University of Technology, Sydney.
  • Handle: RePEc:uts:rpaper:383
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    File URL: https://www.uts.edu.au/sites/default/files/article/downloads/QFR-rp383.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Sujoy Chakravarty & Jaideep Roy, 2009. "Recursive expected utility and the separation of attitudes towards risk and ambiguity: an experimental study," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 66(3), pages 199-228, March.
    2. Larry G. Epstein & Martin Schneider, 2008. "Ambiguity, Information Quality, and Asset Pricing," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 63(1), pages 197-228, February.
    3. Ozsoylev, Han N. & Takayama, Shino, 2010. "Price, trade size, and information revelation in multi-period securities markets," Journal of Financial Markets, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 49-76, February.
    4. Alex Voorhoeve & Ken Binmore & Arnaldur Stefansson & Lisa Stewart, 2016. "Ambiguity attitudes, framing, and consistency," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 81(3), pages 313-337, September.
    5. Cesaltina Pacheco Pires, 2002. "A Rule For Updating Ambiguous Beliefs," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 53(2), pages 137-152, September.
    6. Aurélien Baillon & Han Bleichrodt, 2015. "Testing Ambiguity Models through the Measurement of Probabilities for Gains and Losses," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 7(2), pages 77-100, May.
    7. König-Kersting, Christian & Trautmann, Stefan T., 2016. "Ambiguity attitudes in decisions for others," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 146(C), pages 126-129.
    8. Gradojevic, Nikola & Erdemlioglu, Deniz & Gençay, Ramazan, 2017. "Informativeness of trade size in foreign exchange markets," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 150(C), pages 27-33.
    9. Peter Klibanoff & Massimo Marinacci & Sujoy Mukerji, 2005. "A Smooth Model of Decision Making under Ambiguity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 73(6), pages 1849-1892, November.
    10. Barclay, Michael J. & Warner, Jerold B., 1993. "Stealth trading and volatility : Which trades move prices?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 281-305, December.
    11. Han Ozsoylev & Jan Werner, 2011. "Liquidity and asset prices in rational expectations equilibrium with ambiguous information," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 48(2), pages 469-491, October.
    12. Alexander, Gordon J. & Peterson, Mark A., 2007. "An analysis of trade-size clustering and its relation to stealth trading," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(2), pages 435-471, May.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    market microstructure; informational ambiguity; Choquet expectation; generalized Bayesian updating; non-additive probability;

    JEL classification:

    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design

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