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Week in Financial Education (May 24, 2021)

In our latest Week in Financial Education (WIFE), Richie’s new video helpfully reviews a series of duration questions, including modified, Macaulay, money duration, and price value of basis point (PVBP; aka, PV01). Compared to the FRM®, the CFA’s approach to duration differs only slightly. The formulas are essentially similar. The CFA’s modified duration is analytical (e.g., solved functionally) while its approximate modified duration is called effective duration in the FRM (i.e., approximated or simulated by shocking an interest rate factor). The CFA’s approximate modified duration shocks the yield (reprices the bond) while its effective duration instead re-prices a term structure (aka, benchmark curve). However–as far as I can tell–both are parallel shifts (geeky note: a parallel shift implies single-factor but single-factor models can be non-parallel). For myself, I do not view the CFA’s distinction between approximate modified duration and effective duration (which are both effective duration in the FRM; the FRM starts from a fairly generalized interest rate factor/vector) as highly consequential. They are both durations approximated via a parallel shift. New learners should be able to see that most of these vocabularies refer to different approaches around the same single concept, but measured in different ways (as a percentage, a time/maturity, or a dollar implication). You’ve got to do the practice just like Richie shows us. Finally, the FRM’s dollar duration is called money duration in the CFA. It gets less attention (mathematically this is the tangent line’s negated slope, less prone to interpretation, but it’s just a rescaled PVBP * 10,000 because there are 10,000 basis points in 100.0%) but money duration/PVBP are arguably the most useful because we use them to hedge.

I hope you like the new practice question sets. I am happy with the code snippet that illustrates an antithetic variate: you don’t need code background to follow this super simple example. Question 21.6.2. also employs a code snippet, but notice how you don’t really need it to answer the question! I am trying to give us practice that is useful. Simulation is not a passive reading exercise, it is done in code. You can spend an entire day reading about bootstrapping and you may never learn it. Bootstrapping is truly a doing thing. I actually put much effort into writing brief snippets (with comments) in the hopes they serve you with realistic examples. Have a good study week!

New Youtube

1. CFA: Tackling classic duration questions

New Practice Questions

1. P1.T2.21.6 Bootstrapping and antithetic/control variates

2. P2.T9.21.6. Marginal value at risk (VaR) in portfolio management

Portfolio model

Forum News

1. May Part 1 FRM exam feedback:

2. May Part 2 FRM exam feedback (continued)

3. [P1.T1] Does value at risk (VaR) favor short horizons?

4. [P1.T1] Capital market line (CML)

5. [P1.T2] Power is conditional on false null, p-value is conditional on a true null (is why power is harder to estimate)

Forum Response

6. [P1.T2] The Box-Pierce joint test of autocorrelations assumes the sample correlations (aka, ACF) is asymptotically normal

7. [P1.T2] Brute force illustration of quarterly trend model

8. [P1.T3. GARP® PQ] What are the impacts of liquidity and transaction costs on forward/futures contracts?

9. [P1.T3] Insurance company balance sheet

Forum Response

10. [P1.T4] Bond-equivalent basis (i.e., per annum with semi-annual compounding) is a mere but relevant convention

11. [P1.T4] Absolute versus relative value at risk (VaR)

12. [P2.T6] Is it better to use spread or hazard rate for CVA approximation?

13. [P2.T6] Comparing Gregory’s marginal/incremental CVA to Crouhy’s marginal/incremental capital

14. [P2.T6] Gregory’s model for overall exposure given threshold and MTA assumptions

Forum Response

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