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A sequential quadratic programming method for volatility estimation in option pricing

Bertram Düring, Ansgar Jüngel and S. Volkwein

No 06/02, CoFE Discussion Papers from University of Konstanz, Center of Finance and Econometrics (CoFE)

Abstract: Our goal is to identify the volatility function in Dupire's equation from given option prices. Following an optimal control approach in a Lagrangian framework, we propose a globalized sequential quadratic programming (SQP) algorithm with a modified Hessian - to ensure that every SQP step is a descent direction - and implement a line search strategy. In each level of the SQP method a linear-quadratic optimal control problem with box constraints is solved by a primal-dual active set strategy. This guarantees L? constraints for the volatility, in particular assuring its positivity. The proposed algorithm is founded on a thorough first - and second-order optimality analysis. We prove the existence of local optimal solutions and of a Lagrange multiplier associated with the inequality constraints. Furthermore, we prove a sufficient second-order optimality condition and present some numerical results underlining the good properties of the numerical scheme. Dupire equation ; parameter identification ; optimal control ; optimality conditions ; SQP method ; primal-dual active set strategy

Date: 2006
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