Discrete time methods of pricing Asian options
This dissertation studies the computation methods of pricing of Asian options. Asian options are options in which the underlying variable is the average price over a period of time. Because of this, Asian options have a lower volatility and this render them cheaper relative to their European counterparts. Asian options belong to the so-called path-dependent derivatives; they are among the most difficult to price and hedge both analytically and numerically. In practice, it is only discrete Asian options that are traded, however continuous Asian options are used for studying purposes. Several approaches have been proposed in the literature, including Monte Carlo simulations, tree-based methods, Taylor’s expansion, partial differential equations, and analytical ap- proximations among others. When using partial differential equations for pricing of continuous time Asian options, the high dimensionality is problematic. In this dissertation we focus on the discrete time methods. We start off by explaining the binomial tree method, and our last chapter presents the very exciting and relatively simple method of Tsao and Huang, using Taylor approximations. The main papers that are used in this dissertation are articles by Jan Vecer (2001); LCG Rogers (1995); Eric Benhamou (2001); Gianluca Fusai (2007); Kamizono, Kariya and Nakatsuma (2006) and Tsao and Huang (2007). The author has provided computations, including graphs and tables dispersed over the different chapters, to demonstrate the utility of the methods. We observe various parameters of influence such as correlation, volatility, strike, etc. A further contribution by the author of this dissertation is, in particular, in Chapter 5, in the presentation of the work of Tsao et al. Here we have provided slightly more detailed explanations and again some further computational tables.