Bao, Qunfang (2013): MeanReverting Logarithmic Modeling of VIX.

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Abstract
Since March 26, 2004, when the CBOE Futures Exchange (CFE) began trading futures written on S&P500 volatility index (VIX), volatility has become a widely accepted asset class as trading, diversifying and hedging vehicle by traders, investors and portfolio managers over the past few years. On February 24, 2006, CBOE introduced options written on VIX index and since then VIX option series has now become the most actively traded index option series on CBOE.
This thesis focuses on mathematical modeling of spot VIX with standalone approach. Unlike the consistent modeling approach in literature, which starts with specifying joint dynamics for SPX index and its instantaneous stochastic volatility then derives expression for spot VIX and price VIX derivatives based on this expression, standalone approach starts with directly specifying dynamics for spot VIX and prices VIX derivatives in this simpler framework.
Although there is work in literature that studies the meanreverting logarithmic model (MRLR), no work has been done in considering stochastic volatility in MRLR to capture the positive implied volatility skew of VIX option, nor have they compared the pure diffusion version of MRLR with its jump and/or stochastic volatility extensions. Furthermore, most of the literature only focus on static pricing formulas for VIX future and VIX option, no work has been done in investigating the dynamic feature of VIX future, calibration and hedging strategies of meanreverting logarithmic models, as well as the convexity adjustment of VIX future from forward variance swap, which has a liquid variance swap market to back out the volofvol information in meanreverting logarithmic models.
In this thesis, I present four versions of MRLR models. The first model is a pure diffusion model where spot VIX follows a meanreverting logarithmic dynamics. Then I extend this basic MRLR model by adding jump or stochastic volatility into spot VIX dynamics to get MRLRJ and MRLRSV models. Finally, I combine jump and stochastic volatility together and add them into dynamics of spot VIX to get the fully specified MRLRSVJ model.
For all the four models, I derive either transition function or conditional characteristic function of spot VIX. Based on those results, the pricing formulas for VIX future and VIX option are derived. In order to calibrate to VIX future term structure, I make the longterm mean of spot VIX be a timedependent function and use the diffusion, jump and/or stochastic volatility parameters to calibrate VIX implied volatility surface.
Two types of calibration strategies are suggested in this thesis. On the first stage of calibration, we need to calibrate all volofvol parameters to convexity of spot VIX or VIX future. One strategy is to calibrate those parameters to VIX option implied volatility surface. Another strategy is to calibrate them to convexity adjustment of VIX future from forward variance swap, which can be replicated by liquid variance swaps. On the second stage of calibration, the longterm mean function of spot VIX is used to fit VIX futuer term structure given the volofvol parameters calibrated on the first stage.
In addition to the static pricing formula, dynamics of VIX future is also derived under all meanreverting logarithmic models. The analysis in this thesis shows that VIX future follows geometric Brownian motion under MRLR model, jumpdiffusion dynamics under MRLRJ model, stochastic volatility dynamics under MRLRSV model and stochastic volatility with jump dynamics under MRLRSVJ model.
I develop the hedging strategies of VIX future and VIX option under meanreverting logarithmic models. As spot VIX is not tradable asset, investors are unable to take positions on this index. Instead, research in literature has shown that a shorterterm VIX future has good power in forecasting movements of the subsequent VIX future. Therefore, hedging VIX future with a shorterterm VIX future is expected to perform well. Moreover, as VIX option can also be regarded as an option on a VIX future contract that has same maturity as VIX option, using the shorterterm VIX future contract as hedging instrument is a natural choice. In this thesis, I derive hedging ratios of VIX future and VIX option under the above hedging strategy.
At last, numerical analysis in this thesis compares the four models in fitting VIX implied volatility surface. The results show that MRLR is unable to create positive implied volatility skew for VIX option. In contrast, MRLRJ and MRLRSV models perform equally well in fitting positive skew. However, the fully specified MRLRSVJ model adds little value in fitting VIX skew but incurs additional cost of calibrating more parameters and is subject to less stable parameters over maturities and over time.
Item Type:  MPRA Paper 

Original Title:  MeanReverting Logarithmic Modeling of VIX 
Language:  English 
Keywords:  VIX; VIX Future; VIX Option; Forward Variance Swap; VIX Implied Volatility Skew; MRLR Model; JumpDiffusion; Stochastic Volatility. 
Subjects:  G  Financial Economics > G1  General Financial Markets > G13  Contingent Pricing; Futures Pricing 
Item ID:  46413 
Depositing User:  Dr. Qunfang Bao 
Date Deposited:  21. Apr 2013 16:32 
Last Modified:  21. Apr 2013 16:46 
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URI:  http://mpra.ub.unimuenchen.de/id/eprint/46413 