Y. Hen and F. Liu: The Information Content of The Implied Volatility Surface: Can Option Prices Predict Jumps?

September 16, 2019

We ask whether option prices contain information on the likelihood and direction of jumps in the underlying stock prices. Applying the partial least squares (PLS) approach to the entire surface of the implied volatilities (IV), we show that option prices can successfully predict downward jumps in stock prices, but not upward jumps. The PLS estimated downward jump factor can predict stock returns with a spread of 1.53% per month between stocks predicted to have the lowest probability of downward jumps and stocks predicted to have the highest probability of downward jumps.