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Testing for Spanning with Futures Contracts and Nontraded Assets: A general Approach

  • F. A. d. ROON
  • T. E. NIJMAN
  • B. J. WERKER

This paper generalizes the notion of mean-variance spanning as de- ned in the seminal paper of Huberman & Kandel (1987) in three di- mensions.It is shown how regression techniques can be used to test for spanning for more general classes of utility functions, in case some as- sets are nontraded, and in case some of the assets are zero-investment securities such as futures contracts.We then implement these tech- niques to test whether a basic set of three international stock indices, the S&P 500, the FAZ (Germany), and the FTSE (UK), span a set of commodity and currency futures contracts.Depending on whether mean-variance, logarithmic, or power utility functions are considered, the hypothesis of spanning can be rejected for most futures contracts considered.If an investor has a position in a nontraded commodity, then the hypothesis of spanning can almost always be rejected for fu- tures contracts on that commodity for all utility functions considered.For currency futures this is only the case for a power utility function that re ects a preference for skewness.Finally, if we explicitly take into account net futures positions of large traders that are known to have predictive power for futures returns, the hypothesis of spanning can be rejected for most futures contracts.

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Paper provided by Humboldt University of Berlin, Interdisciplinary Research Project 373: Quantification and Simulation of Economic Processes in its series SFB 373 Discussion Papers with number 1996,63.

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Date of creation: 1996
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:sfb373:199663
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  1. Carter, Colin A. & Rausser, Gordon C. & Schmitz, Andrew, 1982. "Efficient asset portfolios and the theory of normal backwardation," Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley, Working Paper Series qt59c8m4x6, Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley.
  2. Harvey, Campbell R, 1995. "Predictable Risk and Returns in Emerging Markets," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 8(3), pages 773-816.
  3. Huberman, Gur & Kandel, Shmuel, 1987. " Mean-Variance Spanning," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 42(4), pages 873-88, September.
  4. Chen, Zhiwu & Knez, Peter J, 1996. "Portfolio Performance Measurement: Theory and Applications," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 9(2), pages 511-55.
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  6. Ferson, Wayne E & Foerster, Stephen R & Keim, Donald B, 1993. " General Tests of Latent Variable Models and Mean-Variance Spanning," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 48(1), pages 131-56, March.
  7. Hansen, Lars Peter & Jagannathan, Ravi, 1991. "Implications of Security Market Data for Models of Dynamic Economies," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(2), pages 225-62, April.
  8. Glosten, L. R. & Jagannathan, R., 1994. "A contingent claim approach to performance evaluation," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 1(2), pages 133-160, January.
  9. Fama, Eugene F & French, Kenneth R, 1987. "Commodity Futures Prices: Some Evidence on Forecast Power, Premiums,and the Theory of Storage," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 60(1), pages 55-73, January.
  10. Chang, Eric C, 1985. " Returns to Speculators and the Theory of Normal Backwardation," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 40(1), pages 193-208, March.
  11. Bekaert, Geert & Urias, Michael S, 1996. " Diversification, Integration and Emerging Market Closed-End Funds," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 51(3), pages 835-69, July.
  12. Ross, Stephen A., 1978. "Mutual fund separation in financial theory--The separating distributions," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 254-286, April.
  13. Bessembinder, Hendrik, 1992. "Systematic Risk, Hedging Pressure, and Risk Premiums in Futures Markets," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 5(4), pages 637-67.
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