, Volume 3, Issue 3, pp 237-262

Interest rate option pricing with volatility humps

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Abstract

This paper develops a simple model for pricing interest rate options when the volatility structure of forward rates is humped. Analytical solutions are developed for European claims and efficient algorithms exist for pricing American options. The interest rate claims are priced in the Heath-Jarrow-Morton paradigm, and hence incorporate full information on the term structure. The structure of volatilities is captured without using time varying parameters. As a result, the volatility structure is stationary. It is not possible to have all the above properties hold in a Heath Jarrow Morton model with a single state variable. It is shown that the full dynamics of the term structure is captured by a three state Markovian system. Caplet data is used to establish that the volatility hump is an important feature to capture.

This revised version was published online in June 2006 with corrections to the Cover Date.