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33
votes
5answers
12k views

What is a good broker for HFT?

Currently I trade trough IB. I run my HFT strategies (100 roundtrips per hour) but I think that latency is killing me and my profits are shrinking. I need the fastest possible brokers out there which ...
32
votes
13answers
17k views

Why Drifts are not in the Black Scholes Formula

This question has puzzled me for a while. We all know geometric brownian motions have drifts $\mu$: $dS / S = \mu dt + \sigma dW$ and different stocks have different drifts of $\mu$. Why would ...
32
votes
12answers
10k views

Is F# used in trading systems?

Similar to this other question about Scala, I'm interested in knowing whether F# is used to any measurable degree in financial circles. Have there been any successful shops using it, any research on ...
32
votes
6answers
7k views

How to estimate real-world probabilities

In the world of finance, Risk-neutral pricing allow us to estimate the fair value of derivatives using the risk free rate as the expected return of the underlyings. However, the behavior of ...
32
votes
11answers
88k views

Mapping symbols between tickers, Reuters RICs and Bloomberg tickers

Is there any known solution (preferably open source) to map between ticker symbols, Reuters and Bloomberg symbols. For example: Ticker: AAPL Reuters: AAPL.O (may be prefixed with RSF.ANY. dependent ...
31
votes
9answers
23k views

How should I store tick data?

How should I store tick data? For example, if I have an IB trading account, how should I download and store the tick data directly to my computer? Which software should I use?
31
votes
6answers
22k views

What type of investor is willing to be short gamma?

As far as I understand, most investors are willing to buy options (puts and calls) in order to limit their exposure to the market in case it moves against them. This is due to the fact that they are ...
31
votes
5answers
8k views

Any research on how natural language processing can be used to forecast stocks?

Is there any published research of decent quality linking news or unstructured information to asset returns? I know that Thomson Reuters offers its Machine Readable news (MRN), so somebody must use it....
31
votes
5answers
5k views

Random matrix theory (RMT) in finance

The new kid on the block in finance seems to be random matrix theory. Although RMT as a theory is not so new (about 50 years) and was first used in quantum mechanics it being used in finance is a ...
31
votes
7answers
2k views

Why do some anomalies persist while others fade away?

In their 1990 book, A Non-Random Walk Down Wall Street, Andrew Lo and Craig MacKinlay document a number of persistent predictable patterns in stock prices. One of these "anomalies" is variously known ...
31
votes
5answers
12k views

Skew arbitrage: How can you realize the skewness of the underlying?

It's not clear to me how to realize skewness. In other words, how do you implement skew arbitrage? There seems to be no well-known recipe like in volatility arbitrage. Volatility arbitrage (or vol ...
31
votes
9answers
13k views

What tools exist for order book analysis and visualization?

What tools exist for order book analysis and visualization? In particular, if one wanted to examine a limit order book and understand how it changes throughout the day where would you turn for ...
31
votes
10answers
33k views

Are there any good tools for back testing options strategies?

There are all kinds of tools for backtesting linear instruments (like stocks or stock indices). It is a completely different story when it comes to option strategies. Most of the tools used are ...
31
votes
1answer
8k views

Which approach to estimating fundamental factor models is better, cross-sectional (unobservable) factors or time-series (observable) factors?

There are many approaches to estimating fundamental factor equity models. I would like to focus on two traditional methods: The time-series regression approach of Fama and French. Factors are ...
30
votes
11answers
4k views

Separating the wheat from the chaff: What quant methods separate skillful managers from lucky ones?

Fund managers are acting in a highly stochastic environment. What methods do you know to systematically separate skillful fund managers from those that were just lucky? Every idea, reference, paper ...
30
votes
6answers
33k views

How to identify technical analysis chart patterns algorithmically?

I'm working on a small application that will provide some charts and graphs to be used for technical analysis. I'm new to TA but I'm wondering if there is a way to algorithmically identify the ...
30
votes
8answers
5k views

Excellent information source on advanced machine learning / data mining based trading?

I did check the related posts, like this one here. However, given if one already has knowledge in finance, machine learning and statistics, and wants to know something more advanced on machine ...
30
votes
5answers
5k views

Why aren't econometric models used more in Quant Finance?

There is a big body of literature on econometric models like ARIMA, ARIMAX or VAR. Yet to the best of my knowledge practically nobody is making use of that in Quantitative Finance. Yes, there is a ...
30
votes
8answers
51k views

What is the difference between volatility and variance?

How do volatility and variance differ in finance and what do both imply about the movement of an underlying?
30
votes
2answers
5k views

Have Goldman Sachs Quantitative Strategies Research Notes been published as a book or a comprehensive collection?

Back in the 90's, Goldman Sachs (publicly?) released a series called "Quantitative Strategies Research Notes" — mostly technical papers on topic. Emanuel Derman co-authored almost all of them. Some ...
30
votes
3answers
4k views

How do you mix quantitative asset allocation with qualitative views?

Usually in asset allocation you have a quantitative approach (which can be from example mean-variance), but you (or you and your firm) also have a more qualitative approach given market-conditions, ...
30
votes
4answers
8k views

What is a stationary process?

How do you explain what a stationary process is? In the first place, what is meant by process, and then what does the process have to be like so it can be called stationary?
30
votes
5answers
7k views

Trading a synthetic replication of the VIX index

One cannot directly buy and sell the VIX index. Theoretically, however, one could approximate the index by purchasing an at-the-money straddle on the SP500, then delta-hedging the straddle. Does ...
29
votes
9answers
6k views

How good is managed code for algo trading?

I am currently working in a firm that does algo trading. We do all of our stuff in Java. And we do make money out of it. We have debates all the time whether we would have made more money with native ...
29
votes
9answers
15k views

Any known bugs with Yahoo Finance adjusted close data ?

Yahoo Finance allows you to download tables of their daily historical stock price data. The data includes an adjusted closing price that I thought I might use to calculate daily log returns as a ...
29
votes
4answers
21k views

How to derive the implied probability distribution from B-S volatilities?

The general problem I have is visualization of the implied distribution of returns of a currency pair. I usually use QQplots for historical returns, so for example versus the normal distribution: ...
29
votes
8answers
4k views

How to design a custom equity backtester?

I was thinking about writing my own backtester and I realize I have to make some assumptions. So I was hoping I could post what I am planning on doing and hopefully some of you can give me some ideas ...
29
votes
4answers
12k views

Is there an intuitive explanation for the Feynman-Kac-Theorem?

The Feynman-Kac theorem states that for an Ito-process of the form $$dX_t = \mu(t, X_t)dt + \sigma(t, X_t)dW_t$$ there is a measurable function $g$ such that $$g_t(t,x) + g_x(t, x) \mu(t,x) + \frac{1}{...
29
votes
0answers
1k views

Law of an integrated CIR Process as sum of Independent Random Variables

It is known (see for example Joshi-Chan "Fast and Accureate Long Stepping Simulation of the Heston SV Model" available at SSRN) that for a CIR process defined as : $$dY_t= \kappa(\theta -Y_t)dt+ \...
28
votes
17answers
86k views

What programming languages are most commonly used in quantitative finance?

What programming languages are the most common in quantitative finance, and why are these languages used? Note: I do not mean, what languages are used to develop the accounting system at a hedge fund:...
28
votes
6answers
16k views

What is the intuition behind cointegration?

What is the intuition behind cointegration? What does the Dickey-Fuller test do to test for it? Ideally, a non-technical explanation would be appreciated. Say you need to explain it to an investor ...
28
votes
8answers
25k views

What is the best data structure/implementation for representing a time series?

I was wondering what is best practice for representing elements in a time series, especially with large amounts of data. The focus/context is in a back testing engine and comparing multiple series. ...
28
votes
2answers
6k views

How do we use option price models (like Black-Scholes Model) to make money in practice?

In quantitative finance, we know we have a lot of option price models such as geometric Brownian motion model (Black-Scholes models), stochastic volatility model (Heston), jump diffusion models and so ...
28
votes
5answers
14k views

How should I calculate the implied volatility of an American option in a real-time production environment?

There are many models available for calculating the implied volatility of an American option. The most popular method, employed by OptionMetrics and others, is probably the Cox-Ross-Rubinstein model. ...
28
votes
8answers
13k views

Training set of tick-by-tick data?

I'm looking to find a free source of tick by tick data (<1sec) for training purposes. It doesn't need to be longer than a day, and I don't care what instrument, or exchange, or time it is. I just ...
28
votes
12answers
17k views

What is the reference python library for portfolio optimization?

Does anyone know of a python library/source that is able to calculate the traditional mean-variance portfolio? To press my luck, any resources where the library/source also contains functions such as ...
28
votes
4answers
9k views

Why do high frequency traders use rapidly cancelled limit orders?

In reading about the various practices and strategies of high frequency traders, one of the most mysterious to me is "fleeting orders," or orders that are cancelled almost immediately after they are ...
28
votes
1answer
6k views

What is the role of stochastic calculus in day-to-day trading?

I work with practical, day-to-day trading: just making money. One of my small clients recently hired a smart, new MFE. We discussed potential trading strategies for a long time. Finally, he expressed ...
28
votes
2answers
15k views

What is the difference between the methods for calculating VaR?

There are three different commonly used Value at Risk (VaR) methods: Historical method Variance-Covariance Method Monte Carlo What is the difference between these approaches, and under what ...
27
votes
5answers
7k views

What exactly is meant by “microstructure noise”?

I see that term tossed around a lot, in articles relating to HFT, and ultra high frequency data. It says at higher frequencies, smaller intervals, microstructure noise is very dominant. What is ...
27
votes
8answers
5k views

What kind of basic framework or application do you use to run your trading algorithms?

I heard about MetaTrader from http://www.metaquotes.net. Is there any other framework or program available? Do you use different software for backtracking and running your trading algorithms? Thank ...
27
votes
7answers
34k views

How to calculate historical intraday volatility?

Sorry for what must be a beginner question, but when I went to write code I realized I didn't understand exactly how historical volatility, or statistical volatility, is defined. Wikipedia tells me "...
27
votes
2answers
21k views

Transformation from the Black-Scholes differential equation to the diffusion equation - and back

I know the derivation of the Black-Scholes differential equation and I understand (most of) the solution of the diffusion equation. What I am missing is the transformation from the Black-Scholes ...
27
votes
6answers
4k views

Most successful investors using academic-based framework?

What are the most famous/best performing absolute-return funds employing approaches based on mainstream finance theory (i.e., theory presented in Journal of Finance, AER, Econometrica, using typically ...
27
votes
6answers
11k views

Why is an inverted yield curve a problem?

Immediately preceding the worst of the financial crisis, my professors all pointed out to me that the yield curve had inverted -- short-term yields were more risky than 20-year or 30-year Treasury ...
27
votes
1answer
17k views

Correctly applying GARCH in Python

Problem: Correct usage of GARCH(1,1) Aim of research: Forecasting volatility/variance. Tools used: Python Instrument: SPX (specifically adjusted close prices) Reference material: On Estimation of ...
26
votes
5answers
51k views

How to simulate stock prices with a Geometric Brownian Motion?

I want to simulate stock price paths with different stochastic processes. I started with the famous geometric brownian motion. I simulated the values with the following formula: $$R_i=\frac{S_{i+1}-...
26
votes
5answers
6k views

What methods do you use to improve expected return estimates when constructing a portfolio in a mean-variance framework?

One of the main problems when trying to apply mean-variance portfolio optimization in practice is its high input sensitivity. As can be seen in (Chopra, 1993) using historical values to estimate ...
26
votes
5answers
18k views

How do you explain the volatility smile in the Black-Scholes framework?

Does anyone have an explanation for the currently naturally forming volatility smile (and the variations) in the market?
26
votes
4answers
3k views

How are risk management practices applied to ML/AI-based automated trading systems

A potential issue with automated trading systems, that are based on Machine Learning (ML) and/or Artificial Intelligence (AI), is the difficulty of assessing the risk of a trade. An ML/AI algorithm ...

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