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J. Cao, B. Han, “Cross-section of Option Returns and Idiosyncratic Stock Volatility.” (paper presented by Jay Cao at the OptionMetrics User Conference 2012).

J. Cao, B. Han, “Cross-section of Option Returns and Idiosyncratic Stock Volatility.” (paper presented by Jay Cao at the OptionMetrics User Conference 2012).

Abstract: This paper documents a robust new finding that delta-hedged equity option return decreases monotonically with an increase in the idiosyncratic volatility of the underlying stock. This result can not be explained by standard risk factors. It is distinct from existing anomalies in the stock market or volatility-related option mis-pricing. It is consistent with market imperfections and constrained financial intermediaries. Dealers charge a higher premium for options on high idiosyncratic volatility stocks due to their higher arbitrage costs. Controlling for limits to arbitrage proxies reduces the strength of the negative relation between delta-hedged option return and idiosyncratic volatility by about 40%.