Essays on Financial Economics
This thesis contains three essays spanning the ﬁelds of ﬁnancial market microstructure and empirical ﬁnance. The ﬁrst essay focuses on reviewing the recent key innovations in trading technology–high frequency trading. I developed a theoretical model to shed light on the eﬀects of high frequency trading on market liquidity especially during stressed market conditions. Many investors and regulators are concerned that high frequency liquidity provision is selective and limited to periods of low stress. However, I ﬁnd that high frequency liquidity providers improve market liquidity especially during high volatility periods because speed can help to mitigate the market friction caused by asymmetric information. The second and third essays examine applications of a recently developed fractionally cointegrated vector autoregressive (FCVAR) model to commodity spot and futures price data. The second essay, co-authored with Sepideh Dolatabadi and Morten Ø. Nielsen, investigates the contribution of commodity spot and futures markets to price discovery using a FCVAR model. Compared to the results from the non-fractional model, we ﬁnd slightly more evidence of price discovery in the commodity spot market. The third essay, co-authored with Sepideh Dolatabadi, Paresh K. Narayan and Morten Ø. Nielsen, focuses on forecasting commodity spot and futures returns using FCVAR models and examining the proﬁtability of a dynamic (mean-variance) trading strategy based on the FCVAR forecasts. We generally ﬁnd that the fractional model generates higher proﬁts on average compared to the non-fractional CVAR model.
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