C. Bajlum and Peter Tind Larsen: Capital Structure Arbitrage: Model Choice and Volatility Calibration

June 13, 2008

When identifying relative value opportunities across credit and equity markets, the arbitrageur faces two major problems, namely positions based on model misspecification and mismeasured inputs. Using credit default swap data, this paper addresses both concerns in a convergence-type trading strategy. In spite of differences in assumptions governing default and calibration, we find the exact structural model linking the markets second to timely key inputs. Studying an equally-weighted portfolio of all relative value positions, the excess returns are insignificant when based on a traditional volatility from historical equity returns.