- Anne Jansen, Donald Mathieson, Barry Eichengreen, Laura Kodres, Bankim Chadha, and Sunil Sharma
- Published Date:
- May 1998
Trading strategies designed to profit from price differences for the same or similar goods (assets) in different markets. Historically the term implied little or no risk in the trade, but more recently it has come to include strategies that entail some risk of loss or uncertainty about total profits.
(1) A person paid a fee or commission for acting as an agent in making contracts, sales, or purchases; (2) a “floor” broker: a person who actually executes someone else’s trading orders on the trading floor of an exchange; and (3) an “account executive”: the person who deals with customers and their orders in commission house offices.
The interest rate arbitrage technique of borrowing in a low-yielding currency and lending in a high-yielding one.
The other party to a contract. For exchange-traded futures and options contracts, the counterparty is usually the exchange itself (an exception is the London International Financial Futures Exchange (LIFFE), where the broker plays this role). For over-the-counter instruments, the counter-party is generally a financial intermediary such as a major money-center bank, an investment or merchant bank, or a securities company.
A transaction in which two counterparties exchange specific amounts of two different currencies at the outset and repay over time according to a predetermined schedule that reflects interest payments and, possibly, amortization of principal. The payment flows in currency swaps (in which payments are based on fixed interest rates in each currency) are generally like those associated with a combination of spot and forward currency transactions.
A financial intermediary that makes a market in a financial instrument and hence, as distinct from a broker, participates as a principal in the financial transaction.
Securities whose value is “derived” from the value of other financial securities (called the underlying financial security or instrument).
A cash market transaction in which two parties agree to the purchase and sale of a commodity at some future time under such conditions as the two agree. In contrast to a futures contract, the terms of a forward contract are not standardized; a forward contract is not transferable and usually can be canceled only with the consent of the other party, which often must be obtained for consideration and other penalty. Also, forward contracts are not traded on organized exchanges.
An exchange-traded contract generally calling for delivery of a specified amount of a particular grade of commodity or financial instrument at a fixed date in the future. Contracts are highly standardized and traders need agree only on the price and number of contracts traded. Traders’ positions are maintained at the exchange’s clearing-house, which becomes a counterparty to each trade once it has been cleared at the end of each day’s trading session. Members holding positions at the clearinghouse must post margin, which is marked to market daily. Most trades are unwound before delivery. The interposition of the clearinghouse facilitates the unwinding because a trader need not find his original counterparty, but may arrange an offsetting position with any trader on the exchange.
A capital charge representing the fraction of a broker or a dealers’s securities portfolio (or more generally of any portfolio) that cannot be traded but must be held to provide for potential losses.
The process of offsetting an existing risk by taking an opposite position on another risk likely to move in the same direction.
A situation in which traders emulate the actions of other traders.
The proportion of debt to equity.
The ease with which a prospective seller of a financial instrument can find a buyer at the prevailing market price. Liquidity is generally higher in markets in which the volume of trading is larger.
(1) In the futures market, the position of a trader on the buying side of an open futures contract; and (2) in the options market, the position of a trader who has purchased an option regardless of whether it is a put or a call. A participant with a long call option can profit from a rise in the price of the underlying instrument, while a trader with a long put option can profit from a fall in the price of the underlying instrument.
An amount of money deposited by both buyers and sellers for futures contracts to ensure performance of the terms of the contract, that is, the delivery or taking of delivery of the commodity or the cancellation of the position by a subsequent offsetting trade at such price as can be attained. Margin in futures markets is not a payment of equity or down-payment on the commodity itself but is rather in the nature of a performance bond or security deposit.
Banks’ business, often fee-based, that does not generally involve booking assets and taking deposits (for example, trading of swaps, options, foreign exchange forwards, stand-by commitments, and letters of credit).
The contractual right, but not the obligation, to buy or sell a specified amount of a given financial instrument at a fixed price before or at a designated future date. A call option confers on the holder the right to buy the financial instrument. A put option involves the right to sell the financial instrument.
Trading in financial instruments transacted off organized exchanges. Generally the parties must negotiate all details of the transactions or agree to certain simplifying market conventions. In most cases, OTC market transactions are negotiated over the telephone. OTC trading includes transactions among market-makers and between market-makers and their customers. Firms mutually determine their trading partners on a bilateral basis.
A market commitment. For example, one who has bought futures contracts is said to have a long position, and, conversely, a seller of futures contracts is said to have a short position.
An agreement where the owner of marketable securities agrees to sell them to a financial institution and then buy them back later. The price at which the securities are bought back is slightly higher than the price obtained for their sale. In effect, the financial institution provides a fully collateralized loan to the owner of the securities and the difference between the repurchase price and the sale price is the interest on the loan. Most repos are overnight repos and the agreement is renegotiated the following day. Longer-term agreements are called term-repos.
(1) In the futures market, the position of a trader on the selling side of an open futures contract; and (2) in the options market, the position of a trader who has sold or written an option regardless of whether it is a put or a call. The writer’s maximum potential profit is the premium received.
The sale of assets that a seller does not own.
Term denoting immediate delivery for cash as distinct from future delivery.
A financial transaction in which two counterparties agree to exchange streams of payments over time according to a predetermined rule. A swap is normally used to transform the market exposure associated with a loan or bond borrowing from one interest rate base (fixed term or floating rate) or currency of denomination to another.
Recent Occasional Papers of the International Monetary Fund
166. Hedge Funds and Financial Market Dynamics, by a staff team led by Barry Eichengreen and Donald Mathieson with Bankim Chadha, Anne Jansen, Laura Kodres, and Sunil Sharma. 1998.
165. Algeria: Stabilization and Transition to the Market, by Karim Nashashibi, Patricia Alonso-Gamo, Stefania Bazzoni, Alain Féler, Nicole Laframboise, and Sebastian Paris Horvitz. 1998.
164. MULTIMOD Mark III: The Core Dynamic and Steady-State Models, by Douglas Laxton, Peter Isard, Hamid Faruqee, Eswar Prasad, and Bart Turtelboom. 1998.
163. Egypt: Beyond Stabilization, Toward a Dynamic Market Economy, by a staff team led by Howard Handy. 1998.
162. Fiscal Policy Rules, by George Kopits and Steven Symansky. 1998.
161. The Nordic Banking Crises: Pitfalls in Financial Liberalization? by Burkhard Dress and Ceyla Pazarbaşioğlu. 1998.
160. Fiscal Reform in Low-Income Countries: Experience Under IMF-Supported Programs, by a staff team led by George T. Abed and comprising Liam Ebrill, Sanjeev Gupta, Benedict Clements, Ronald McMorran, Anthony Pellechio, Jerald Schiff, and Marijn Verhoeven. 1998.
159. Hungary: Economic Policies for Sustainable Growth, by Carlo Cottarelli, Thomas Krueger, Reza Moghadam, Perry Perone, Edgardo Ruggiero, and Rachel van Elkan. 1998.
158. Transparency in Goverment Operations, by George Kopits and Jon Craig. 1998.
157. Central Bank Reforms in the Baltics, Russia, and the Other Countries of the Former Soviet Union, by a staff team led by Malcolm Knight and comprising Susana Almuiña, John Dalton, Inci Otker, Ceyla Pazarbaşioğlu, Arne B. Petersen, Peter Quirk, Nicholas M. Roberts, Gabriel Sensenbrenner, and Jan Willem van der Vossen. 1997.
156. The ESAF at Ten Years: Economic Adjustment and Reform in Low-Income Countries, by the staff of the International Monetary Fund. 1997.
155. Fiscal Policy Issues During the Transition in Russia, by Augusto Lopez-Claros and Sergei V. Alexashenko. 1998.
154. Credibility Without Rules? Monetary Frameworks in the Post–Bretton Woods Era, by Carlo Cottarelli and Curzio Giannini. 1997.
153. Pension Regimes and Saving, by G.A. Mackenzie, Philip Gerson, and Alfredo Cuevas, 1997.
152. Hong Kong, China: Growth, Structural Change, and Economic Stability During the Transition, by John Dodsworth and Dubravko Mihaljek. 1997.
151. Currency Board Arrangements: Issues and Experiences, by a staff team led by Tomás J.T. Balino and Charles Enoch. 1997.
150. Kuwait: From Reconstruction to Accumulation for Future Generations, by Nigel Andrew Chalk, Mohamed A. El-Erian, Susan J. Fennell, Alexei P. Kireyev, and John F. Wilson. 1997.
149. The Composition of Fiscal Adjustment and Growth: Lessons from Fiscal Reforms in Eight Economies, by G.A. Mackenzie, David W.H. Orsmond, and Philip R. Gerson. 1997.
148. Nigeria: Experience with Structural Adjustment, by Gary Moser, Scott Rogers, and Reinold van Til, with Robin Kibuka and Inutu Lukonga. 1997.
147. Aging Populations and Public Pension Schemes, by Sheetal K. Chand and Albert Jaeger. 1996.
146. Thailand: The Road to Sustained Growth, by Kalpana Kochhar, Louis Dicks-Mireaux, Balazs Horvath, Mauro Mecagni, Erik Offerdal, and Jianping Zhou. 1996.
145. Exchange Rate Movements and Their Impact on Trade and Investment in the APEC Region, by Takatoshi Ito, Peter Isard, Steven Symansky, and Tamim Bayoumi. 1996.
144. National Bank of Poland: The Road to Indirect Instruments, by Piero Ugolini. 1996.
143. Adjustment for Growth: The African Experience, by Michael T. Hadjimichael, Michael Nowak, Robert Sharer, and Amor Tahari. 1996.
142. Quasi-Fiscal Operations of Public Financial Institutions, by G.A. Mackenzie and Peter Stella. 1996.
141. Monetary and Exchange System Reforms in China: An Experiment in Gradualism, by Hassanali Mehran, Marc Quintyn, Tom Nordman, and Bernard Laurens. 1996.
140. Government Reform in New Zealand, by Graham C. Scott. 1996.
139. Reinvigorating Growth in Developing Countries: Lessons from Adjustment Policies in Eight Economies, by David Goldsbrough, Sharmini Coorey, Louis Dicks-Mireaux, Balazs Horvath, Kalpana Kochhar, Mauro Mecagni, Erik Offerdal, and Jianping Zhou. 1996.
138. Aftermath of the CFA Franc Devaluation, by Jean A.P. Clément, with Johannes Mueller, Stéphane Cossé, and Jean Le Dem. 1996.
137. The Lao People’s Democratic Republic: Systemic Transformation and Adjustment, edited by Ichiro Otani and Chi Do Pham. 1996.
136. Jordan: Strategy for Adjustment and Growth, edited by Edouard Maciejewski and Ahsan Mansur. 1996.
135. Vietnam: Transition to a Market Economy, by John R. Dodsworth, Erich Spitäller, Michael Braulke, Keon Hyok Lee, Kenneth Miranda, Christian Mulder, Hisanobu Shishido, and Krishna Srinivasan. 1996.
134. India: Economic Reform and Growth, by Ajai Chopra, Charles Collyns, Richard Hemming, and Karen Parker with Woosik Chu and Oliver Fratzscher. 1995.
133. Policy Experiences and Issues in the Baltics, Russia, and Other Countries of the Former Soviet Union, edited by Daniel A. Citrin and Ashok K. Lahiri. 1995.
132. Financial Fragilities in Latin America: The 1980s and 1990s, by Liliana Rojas-Suárez and Steven R. Weisbrod. 1995.
131. Capital Account Convertibility: Review of Experience and Implications for IMF Policies, by staff teams headed by Peter J. Quirk and Owen Evans. 1995.
130. Challenges to the Swedish Welfare State, by Desmond Lachman, Adam Bennett, John H. Green, Robert Hagemann, and Ramana Ramaswamy. 1995.
129. IMF Conditionality: Experience Under Stand-By and Extended Arrangements. Part II: Background Papers. Susan Schadler, Editor, with Adam Bennett, Maria Carkovic, Louis Dicks-Mireaux, Mauro Mecagni, James H.J. Morsink, and Miguel A. Savastano. 1995.
128. IMF Conditionality: Experience Under Stand-By and Extended Arrangements. Part I: Key Issues and Findings, by Susan Schadler, Adam Bennett, Maria Carkovic, Louis Dicks-Mireaux, Mauro Mecagni, James H.J. Morsink, and Miguel A. Savastano. 1995.
127. Road Maps of the Transition: The Baltics, the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Russia, by Biswajit Banerjee, Vincent Koen, Thomas Krueger, Mark S. Lutz, Michael Marrese, and Tapio O. Saavalainen. 1995.
126. The Adoption of Indirect Instruments of Monetary Policy, by a staff team headed by William E. Alexander, Tomás J.T. Baliño, and Charles Enoch. 1995.
125. United Germany: The First Five Years—Performance and Policy Issues, by Robert Corker, Robert A. Feldman, Karl Habermeier, Hari Vittas, and Tessa van der Willigen. 1995.
124. Saving Behavior and the Asset Price “Bubble” in Japan: Analytical Studies, edited by Ulrich Baumgartner and Guy Meredith. 1995.
123. Comprehensive Tax Reform: The Colombian Experience, edited by Parthasarathi Shome. 1995.
122. Capital Flows in the APEC Region, edited by Mohsin S. Khan and Carmen M. Reinhart. 1995.
121. Uganda: Adjustment with Growth, 1987–94, by Robert L. Sharer, Hema R. De Zoysa, and Calvin A. McDonald. 1995.
120. Economic Dislocation and Recovery in Lebanon, by Sena Eken, Paul Cashin, S. Nuri Erbas, Jose Martelino, and Adnan Mazarei. 1995.
Note: For information on the title and availability of Occasional Papers not listed, please consult the IMF Publications Catalog or contact IMF Publication Services.