Theories of Risk: Testing Investor Behavior on the Taiwan Stock and Stock Index Futures Markets
18 Pages Posted: 26 Feb 2016
Date Written: April 2016
This article considers four utility functions - concave, convex, S‐shaped, and reverse S‐shaped - to analyze the behavior of different types of investors on the Taiwan stock index and its corresponding index futures. Using stochastic dominance (SD) rules, we show that the existence of all four investor types is plausible. Risk averters prefer spot to futures, whereas risk seekers prefer futures to spot. Investors with S‐shaped utility functions prefer spot (futures) to futures (spot) when markets move upward (downward). Investors with reverse S‐shaped utility functions prefer futures (spot) to spot (futures) when markets move upward (downward). We show that both spot and futures markets can exist when only risk averters are present, but futures can dominate spot only if there is some risk‐seeking behavior. These results are robust with respect to subperiods, spot returns including dividends, and diversification.
JEL Classification: C14, G12, G15
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation