Does Option Trading Have a Pervasive Impact on Underlying Stock Prices?
47 Pages Posted: 16 Mar 2007
Date Written: February 23, 2007
The question of whether and to what extent option trading impacts underlying stock prices has been a focus of intense interest since options began exchange-based trading in 1973. Despite considerable effort, no convincing evidence for a pervasive impact has been produced. A recent strand of theoretical literature predicts that rebalancing by traders who hedge their option positions increases (decreases) underlying stock return volatility when these traders have net written (purchased) option positions. This paper tests this prediction and finds a statistically and economically significant negative relationship between stock return volatility and net purchased option positions of investors who are likely to hedge. Hence, we provide the first evidence for a substantial and pervasive influence of option trading on stock prices.
Keywords: options, stock price paths, impact, trading, hedging
JEL Classification: G10, G12
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation