Index arbitrage

Definition:

An investment trading strategy that exploits divergences between actual and theoretical futures prices. An example is the simultaneous buying (selling) of stock index futures (i.e., S&P 500) while selling (buying) the underlying stocks of that index, capturing as profit the temporarily inflated basis between these two baskets. Often, the point at which profitability exists is expressed at the block call as the number of points the future must be over or under the underlying basket for an arbitrage opportunity to exist. See: Program trading.

Investing Essentials


Copyright © 2011 Campbell R. Harvey, Professor of Finance, Fuqua School of Business at Duke University

Term of the Day

Perfect hedge

A situation in which the profit and loss from the underlying asset and the hedge position are equal.

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