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- Art as an alternative asset class: risk and return characteristics of the Middle Eastern & Northern African art markets (2014)
- This chapter analyzes the risk and return characteristics of investments in artists from the Middle East and Northern Africa (MENA) region over the sample period 2000 to 2012. With hedonic regression modeling we create an annual index that is based on 3,544 paintings created by 663 MENA artists. Our empirical results prove that investing in such a hypothetical index provides strong financial returns. While the results show an exponential growth in sales since 2006, the geometric annual return of the MENA art index is a stable13.9 percent over the whole period. We conclude that investing in MENA paintings would have been profitable but also note that we examined the performance of an emerging art market that has only seen an upward trend without any correction, yet.

- Marginalized predictive likelihood comparisons of linear Gaussian state-space models with applications to DSGE, DSGE-VAR, and VAR models (2014)
- he predictive likelihood is of particular relevance in a Bayesian setting when the purpose is to rank models in a forecast comparison exercise. This paper discusses how the predictive likelihood can be estimated for any subset of the observable variables in linear Gaussian state-space models with Bayesian methods, and proposes to utilize a missing observations consistent Kalman filter in the process of achieving this objective. As an empirical application, we analyze euro area data and compare the density forecast performance of a DSGE model to DSGE-VARs and reduced-form linear Gaussian models.

- Order exposure and liquidity coordination: does hidden liquidity harm price efficiency? (2014)
- We develop a model of an order-driven exchange competing for order flow with off-exchange trading mechanisms. Liquidity suppliers face a trade-off between benefits and costs of order exposure. If they display trading intentions, they attract additional trade demand. We show, in equilibrium, hiding trade intentions can induce mis-coordination between liquidity supply and demand, generate excess price fluctuations and harm price efficiency. Econometric high-frequency analysis based on unique data on hidden orders from NASDAQ reveals strong empirical support for these predictions: We find abnormal reactions in prices and order flow after periods of high excess-supply of hidden liquidity.

- On the economics of crisis contracts (2014)
- We examine the impact of so-called "Crisis Contracts" on bank managers' risk-taking incentives and on the probability of banking crises. Under a Crisis Contract, managers are required to contribute a pre-specified share of their past earnings to finance public rescue funds when a crisis occurs. This can be viewed as a retroactive tax that is levied only when a crisis occurs and that leads to a form of collective liability for bank managers. We develop a game-theoretic model of a banking sector whose shareholders have limited liability, so that society at large will suffer losses if a crisis occurs. Without Crisis Contracts, the managers' and shareholders' interests are aligned, and managers take more than the socially optimal level of risk. We investigate how the introduction of Crisis Contracts changes the equilibrium level of risk-taking and the remuneration of bank managers. We establish conditions under which the introduction of Crisis Contracts will reduce the probability of a banking crisis and improve social welfare. We explore how Crisis Contracts and capital requirements can supplement each other and we show that the efficacy of Crisis Contracts is not undermined by attempts to hedge.

- Advertising arbitrage (2014)
- Speculators often advertise arbitrage opportunities in order to persuade other investors and thus accelerate the correction of mispricing. We show that in order to minimize the risk and the cost of arbitrage an investor who identifies several mispriced assets optimally advertises only one of them, and overweights it in his portfolio; a risk-neutral arbitrageur invests only in this asset. The choice of the asset to be advertised depends not only on mispricing but also on its "advertisability" and accuracy of future news about it. When several arbitrageurs identify the same arbitrage opportunities, their decisions are strategic complements: they invest in the same asset and advertise it. Then, multiple equilibria may arise, some of which inefficient: arbitrageurs may correct small mispricings while failing to eliminate large ones. Finally, prices react more strongly to the ads of arbitrageurs with a successful track record, and reputation-building induces high-skill arbitrageurs to advertise more than others.

- Fitting parsimonious household-portfolio models to data (2014)
- US data and new stockholding data from fifteen European countries and China exhibit a common pattern: stockholding shares increase in household income and wealth. Yet, there is a multitude of numbers to match through models. Using a single utility function across households (parsimony), we suggest a strategy for fitting stockholding numbers, while replicating that saving rates increase in wealth, too. The key is introducing subsistence consumption to an Epstein-Zin-Weil utility function, creating endogenous risk-aversion differences across rich and poor. A closed-form solution for the model with insurable labor-income risk serves as calibration guide for numerical simulations with uninsurable labor-income risk.

- The role of oil price shocks in causing U.S. recessions (2014)
- Although oil price shocks have long been viewed as one of the leading candidates for explaining U.S. recessions, surprisingly little is known about the extent to which oil price shocks explain recessions. We provide the first formal analysis of this question with special attention to the possible role of net oil price increases in amplifying the transmission of oil price shocks. We quantify the conditional recessionary effect of oil price shocks in the net oil price increase model for all episodes of net oil price increases since the mid-1970s. Compared to the linear model, the cumulative effect of oil price shocks over course of the next two years is much larger in the net oil price increase model. For example, oil price shocks explain a 3% cumulative reduction in U.S. real GDP in the late 1970s and early 1980s and a 5% cumulative reduction during the financial crisis. An obvious concern is that some of these estimates are an artifact of net oil price increases being correlated with other variables that explain recessions. We show that the explanatory power of oil price shocks largely persists even after augmenting the nonlinear model with a measure of credit supply conditions, of the monetary policy stance and of consumer confidence. There is evidence, however, that the conditional fit of the net oil price increase model is worse on average than the fit of the corresponding linear model, suggesting much smaller cumulative effects of oil price shocks for these episodes of at most 1%.

- SAFE Newsletter : 2014, Q1 (2014)

- Efficient iterative maximum likelihood estimation of high-parameterized time series models (2014)
- We propose an iterative procedure to efficiently estimate models with complex log-likelihood functions and the number of parameters relative to the observations being potentially high. Given consistent but inefficient estimates of sub-vectors of the parameter vector, the procedure yields computationally tractable, consistent and asymptotic efficient estimates of all parameters. We show the asymptotic normality and derive the estimator's asymptotic covariance in dependence of the number of iteration steps. To mitigate the curse of dimensionality in high-parameterized models, we combine the procedure with a penalization approach yielding sparsity and reducing model complexity. Small sample properties of the estimator are illustrated for two time series models in a simulation study. In an empirical application, we use the proposed method to estimate the connectedness between companies by extending the approach by Diebold and Yilmaz (2014) to a high-dimensional non-Gaussian setting.

- The determinants of inflation differentials in the euro area (2014)
- Inflation differentials in the euro area have been persistent since the adoption of the single currency. This paper analyzes the impact of product and labor market regulation on inflation in a sample of 11 countries. The results show that, after the adoption of the euro, product market deregulation has a relevant and significant effect on the level of inflation, while higher labor market regulation increases the responsiveness of inflation to the output gap.