Efficient Simulation Methods for Estimating Risk Measures

Yiping Du

Efficient Simulation Methods for Estimating Risk Measures
Du, Yiping
Thesis Advisor(s):
Broadie, Mark
Moallemi, Ciamac C.
Ph.D., Columbia University
Industrial Engineering and Operations Research
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In this thesis, we analyze the computational problem of estimating financial risk in nested Monte Carlo simulation. An outer simulation is used to generate financial scenarios, and an inner simulation is used to estimate future portfolio values in each scenario. Mean squared error (MSE) for standard nested simulation converges at the rate $k^{-2/3}$, where $k$ is the computational budget. In the first part of this thesis, we focus on one risk measure, the probability of a large loss, and we propose a new algorithm to estimate this risk. Our algorithm sequentially allocates computational effort in the inner simulation based on marginal changes in the risk estimator in each scenario. Theoretical results are given to show that the risk estimator has an asymptotic MSE of order $k^{-4/5+\epsilon}$, for all positive $\epsilon$, that is faster compared to the conventional uniform inner sampling approach. Numerical results consistent with the theory are presented. In the second part of this thesis, we introduce a regression-based nested Monte Carlo simulation method for risk estimation. The proposed regression method combines information from different risk factor realizations to provide a better estimate of the portfolio loss function. The MSE of the regression method converges at the rate $k^{-1}$ until reaching an asymptotic bias level which depends on the magnitude of the regression error. Numerical results consistent with our theoretical analysis are provided and numerical comparisons with other methods are also given. In the third part of this thesis, we propose a method based on weighted regression. Similar to the unweighted regression method, the MSE of the weighted regression method converges at the rate $k^{-1}$ until reaching an asymptotic bias level, which depends on the size of the regression error. However, the weighted approach further reduces MSE by emphasizing scenarios that are more important to the calculation of the risk measure. We find a globally optimal weighting strategy for general risk measures in an idealized setting. For applications, we propose and test a practically implementable two-pass method, where the first pass uses an unweighted regression and the second pass uses weights based on the first pass.
Operations research
Monte Carlo method
Simulation methods
Risk assessment
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Suggested Citation:
Yiping Du, , Efficient Simulation Methods for Estimating Risk Measures, Columbia University Academic Commons, .

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