Matching Items (5)

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Opportunistic fresh-produce commercialization under two-market disintegration

Description

This thesis develops a low-investment marketing strategy that allows low-to-mid level farmers extend their commercialization reach by strategically sending containers of fresh produce items to secondary markets that present temporary

This thesis develops a low-investment marketing strategy that allows low-to-mid level farmers extend their commercialization reach by strategically sending containers of fresh produce items to secondary markets that present temporary arbitrage opportunities. The methodology aims at identifying time windows of opportunity in which the price differential between two markets create an arbitrage opportunity for a transaction; a transaction involves buying a fresh produce item at a base market, and then shipping and selling it at secondary market price. A decision-making tool is developed that gauges the individual arbitrage opportunities and determines the specific price differential (or threshold level) that is most beneficial to the farmer under particular market conditions. For this purpose, two approaches are developed; a pragmatic approach that uses historic price information of the products in order to find the optimal price differential that maximizes earnings, and a theoretical one, which optimizes an expected profit model of the shipments to identify this optimal threshold. This thesis also develops risk management strategies that further reduce profit variability during a particular two-market transaction. In this case, financial engineering concepts are used to determine a shipment configuration strategy that minimizes the overall variability of the profits. For this, a Markowitz model is developed to determine the weight assignation of each component for a particular shipment. Based on the results of the analysis, it is deemed possible to formulate a shipment policy that not only increases the farmer's commercialization reach, but also produces profitable operations. In general, the observed rates of return under a pragmatic and theoretical approach hovered between 0.072 and 0.616 within important two-market structures. Secondly, it is demonstrated that the level of return and risk can be manipulated by varying the strictness of the shipping policy to meet the overall objectives of the decision-maker. Finally, it was found that one can minimize the risk of a particular two-market transaction by strategically grouping the product shipments.

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Date Created
  • 2011

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Portfolio modeling, analysis and management

Description

A systematic top down approach to minimize risk and maximize the profits of an investment over a given period of time is proposed. Macroeconomic factors such as Gross Domestic Product

A systematic top down approach to minimize risk and maximize the profits of an investment over a given period of time is proposed. Macroeconomic factors such as Gross Domestic Product (GDP), Consumer Price Index (CPI), Outstanding Consumer Credit, Industrial Production Index, Money Supply (MS), Unemployment Rate, and Ten-Year Treasury are used to predict/estimate asset (sector ETF`s) returns. Fundamental ratios of individual stocks are used to predict the stock returns. An a priori known cash-flow sequence is assumed available for investment. Given the importance of sector performance on stock performance, sector based Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) for the S&P; and Dow Jones are considered and wealth is allocated. Mean variance optimization with risk and return constraints are used to distribute the wealth in individual sectors among the selected stocks. The results presented should be viewed as providing an outer control/decision loop generating sector target allocations that will ultimately drive an inner control/decision loop focusing on stock selection. Receding horizon control (RHC) ideas are exploited to pose and solve two relevant constrained optimization problems. First, the classic problem of wealth maximization subject to risk constraints (as measured by a metric on the covariance matrices) is considered. Special consideration is given to an optimization problem that attempts to minimize the peak risk over the prediction horizon, while trying to track a wealth objective. It is concluded that this approach may be particularly beneficial during downturns - appreciably limiting downside during downturns while providing most of the upside during upturns. Investment in stocks during upturns and in sector ETF`s during downturns is profitable.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2010

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Industry-specific discretionary accruals and earnings management

Description

In this dissertation, I examine the source of some of the anomalous capital market outcomes that have been documented for firms with high accruals. Chapter 2 develops and implements a

In this dissertation, I examine the source of some of the anomalous capital market outcomes that have been documented for firms with high accruals. Chapter 2 develops and implements a methodology that decomposes a firm's discretionary accruals into a firm-specific and an industry-specific component. I use this decomposition to investigate which component drives the subsequent negative returns associated with firms with high discretionary accruals. My results suggest that these abnormal returns are driven by the firm-specific component of discretionary accruals. Moreover, although industry-specific discretionary accruals do not directly contribute towards this anomaly, I find that it is precisely when industry-specific discretionary accruals are high that firms with high firm-specific discretionary accruals subsequently earn these negative returns. While consistent with irrational mispricing or a rational risk premium associated with high discretionary accruals, these findings also support a transactions-cost based explanation for the accruals anomaly whereby search costs associated with distinguishing between value-relevant and manipulative discretionary accruals can induce investors to overlook potential earnings manipulation. Chapter 3 extends the decomposition to examine the role of firm-specific and industry-specific discretionary accruals in explaining the subsequent market underperformance and negative analysts' forecast errors documented for firms issuing equity. I examine the post-issue market returns and analysts' forecast errors for a sample of seasoned equity issues between 1975 and 2004 and find that offering-year firm-specific discretionary accruals can partially explain these anomalous capital market outcomes. Nonetheless, I find this predictive power of firm-specific accruals to be more pronounced for issues that occur during 1975 - 1989 compared to issues taking place between 1990 and 2004. Additionally, I find no evidence that investors and analysts are more overoptimistic about the prospects of issuers that have both high firm-specific and industry-specific discretionary accruals (compared to firms with high discretionary accruals in general). The results indicate no role for industry-specific discretionary accruals in explaining overoptimistic expectations from seasoned equity issues and suggest the importance of firm-specific factors in inducing earnings manipulation surrounding equity issues.

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Date Created
  • 2011

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Dissertation on linear asset pricing models

Description

One necessary condition for the two-pass risk premium estimator to be consistent and asymptotically normal is that the rank of the beta matrix in a proposed linear asset pricing model

One necessary condition for the two-pass risk premium estimator to be consistent and asymptotically normal is that the rank of the beta matrix in a proposed linear asset pricing model is full column. I first investigate the asymptotic properties of the risk premium estimators and the related t-test and Wald test statistics when the full rank condition fails. I show that the beta risk of useless factors or multiple proxy factors for a true factor are priced more often than they should be at the nominal size in the asset pricing models omitting some true factors. While under the null hypothesis that the risk premiums of the true factors are equal to zero, the beta risk of the true factors are priced less often than the nominal size. The simulation results are consistent with the theoretical findings. Hence, the factor selection in a proposed factor model should not be made solely based on their estimated risk premiums. In response to this problem, I propose an alternative estimation of the underlying factor structure. Specifically, I propose to use the linear combination of factors weighted by the eigenvectors of the inner product of estimated beta matrix. I further propose a new method to estimate the rank of the beta matrix in a factor model. For this method, the idiosyncratic components of asset returns are allowed to be correlated both over different cross-sectional units and over different time periods. The estimator I propose is easy to use because it is computed with the eigenvalues of the inner product of an estimated beta matrix. Simulation results show that the proposed method works well even in small samples. The analysis of US individual stock returns suggests that there are six common risk factors in US individual stock returns among the thirteen factor candidates used. The analysis of portfolio returns reveals that the estimated number of common factors changes depending on how the portfolios are constructed. The number of risk sources found from the analysis of portfolio returns is generally smaller than the number found in individual stock returns.

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Date Created
  • 2011

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Essays In financial and international macroeconomics

Description

I study the importance of financial factors and real exchange rate shocks in explaining business cycle fluctuations, which have been considered important in the literature as non-technological factors in explaining

I study the importance of financial factors and real exchange rate shocks in explaining business cycle fluctuations, which have been considered important in the literature as non-technological factors in explaining business cycle fluctuations. In the first chapter, I study the implications of fluctuations in corporate credit spreads for business cycle fluctuations. Motivated by the fact that corporate credit spreads are countercyclical, I build a simple model in which difference in default probabilities on corporate debts leads to the spread in interest rates paid by firms. In the model, firms differ in the variance of the firm-level productivity, which is in turn linked to the difference in the default probability. The key mechanism is that an increase in the variance of productivity for risky firms relative to safe firms leads to reallocation of capital away from risky firms toward safe firms and decrease in aggregate output and productivity. I embed the above mechanism into an otherwise standard growth model, calibrate it and numerically solve for the equilibrium. In my benchmark case, I find that shocks to variance of productivity for risky and safe firms account for about 66% of fluctuations in output and TFP in the U.S. economy. In the second chapter, I study the importance of shocks to the price of imports relative to the price of final goods, led by the real exchange rate shocks, in accounting for fluctuations in output and TFP in the Korean economy during the Asian crisis of 1997-98. Using the Korean data, I calibrate a standard small open economy model with taxes and tariffs on imported goods, and simulate it. I find that shocks to the price of imports are an important source of fluctuations in Korea's output and TFP in the Korean crisis episode. In particular, in my benchmark case, shocks to the price of imports account for about 55% of the output deviation (from trend), one third of the TFP deviation and three quarters of the labor deviation in 1998.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2011