Max-Plus decomposition of supermartingales and convex order. Application to American options and portfolio insurance

Economy – Quantitative Finance – Pricing of Securities

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Published in at http://dx.doi.org/10.1214/009117907000000222 the Annals of Probability (http://www.imstat.org/aop/) by the Ins

Scientific paper

10.1214/009117907000000222

We are concerned with a new type of supermartingale decomposition in the Max-Plus algebra, which essentially consists in expressing any supermartingale of class $(\mathcal{D})$ as a conditional expectation of some running supremum process. As an application, we show how the Max-Plus supermartingale decomposition allows, in particular, to solve the American optimal stopping problem without having to compute the option price. Some illustrative examples based on one-dimensional diffusion processes are then provided. Another interesting application concerns the portfolio insurance. Hence, based on the ``Max-Plus martingale,'' we solve in the paper an optimization problem whose aim is to find the best martingale dominating a given floor process (on every intermediate date), w.r.t. the convex order on terminal values.

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