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Optimal market making under partial information and numerical methods for impulse control games with applications

Zabaljauregui, Diego (2019) Optimal market making under partial information and numerical methods for impulse control games with applications. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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The topics treated in this thesis are inherently two-fold. The first part considers the problem of a market maker who wants to optimally set bid/ask quotes over a finite time horizon, to maximize her expected utility. The intensities of the orders she receives depend not only on the spreads she quotes, but also on unobservable factors modelled by a hidden Markov chain. This stochastic control problem under partial information is solved by means of stochastic filtering, control and piecewise-deterministic Markov processes theory. The value function is characterized as the unique continuous viscosity solution of its dynamic programming equation. Afterwards, the analogous full information problem is solved and results are compared numerically through a concrete example. The optimal full information spreads are shown to be biased when the exact market regime is unknown, as the market maker needs to adjust for additional regime uncertainty in terms of P&L sensitivity and observable order ow volatility. The second part deals with numerically solving nonzero-sum stochastic differential games with impulse controls. These offer a realistic and far-reaching modelling framework for applications within finance, energy markets and other areas, but the diffculty in solving such problems has hindered their proliferation. Semi-analytical approaches make strong assumptions pertaining very particular cases. To the author's best knowledge, there are no numerical methods available in the literature. A policy-iteration-type solver is proposed to solve an underlying system of quasi-variational inequalities, and it is validated numerically with reassuring results. In particular, it is observed that the algorithm does not enjoy global convergence and a heuristic methodology is proposed to construct initial guesses. Eventually, the focus is put on games with a symmetric structure and a substantially improved version of the former algorithm is put forward. A rigorous convergence analysis is undertaken with natural assumptions on the players strategies, which admit graph-theoretic interpretations in the context of weakly chained diagonally dominant matrices. A provably convergent single-player impulse control solver, often outperforming classical policy iteration, is also provided. The main algorithm is used to compute with high precision equilibrium payoffs and Nash equilibria of otherwise too challenging problems, and even some for which results go beyond the scope of all the currently available theory.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: © 2019 Diego Zabaljauregui
Library of Congress subject classification: Q Science > QA Mathematics
Sets: Departments > Statistics

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