I am tenure-track assistant professor of Finance at the Department of Economics at the University in Copenhagen and a research fellow at the Danish Finance Institute.
I have a deep interest in the economic implications and evolution of blockchain-based settlement in financial markets. I pursue research questions related to market fragmentation, high frequency trading and big data in financial applications. My research is thus anchored in the intersection of market microstructure, asset pricing and financial econometrics.
PhD in Finance, 2020
Vienna Graduate School of Finance
MSc in Mathematical Finance, 2015
University of Konstanz
Blockchain-based markets impose substantial costs on cross-market trading due to the decentralized and time-consuming settlement process. I quantify the impact of the time-consuming settlement process in the market for Bitcoin on arbitrageurs activity. The estimation rests on a novel threshold error correction model that exploits the notion that arbitrageurs suspend trading activity when arbitrage costs exceed price differences. I estimate substantial arbitrage costs that explain 63% of the observed price differences, where more than 75% of these costs can be attributed to the settlement process. I also find that a 10 bp decrease in latency-related arbitrage costs simultaneously results in a 3 bp increase of the quoted bid-ask spreads. I reconcile this finding in a theoretical model in which liquidity providers set larger spreads to cope with high adverse selection risks imposed by increased arbitrage activity. Consequently, efforts to reduce the latency of blockchain-based settlement might have unintended consequences for liquidity provision. In markets with substantial adverse selection risk, faster settlement may even harm price informativeness.
Distributed ledger technologies replace central counterparties with time-consuming consensus protocols to record the transfer of ownership. This settlement latency slows down cross-market trading and exposes arbitrageurs to price risk. We theoretically derive arbitrage bounds induced by settlement latency. Using Bitcoin orderbook and network data, we estimate average arbitrage bounds of 121 basis points, explaining 91% of the cross-market price differences, and demonstrate that asset flows chase arbitrage opportunities. Controlling for inventory holdings as a measure of trust in exchanges does not affect our main results. Blockchain-based settlement without trusted intermediation thus introduces a non-trivial friction that impedes arbitrage activity.
We theoretically and empirically study portfolio optimization under transaction costs and establish a link between turnover penalization and covariance shrinkage with the penalization governed by transaction costs. We show how the ex ante incorporation of transaction costs shifts optimal portfolios towards regularized versions of efficient allocations. The regulatory effect of transaction costs is studied in an econometric setting incorporating parameter uncertainty and optimally combining predictive distributions resulting from high-frequency and low-frequency data. In an extensive empirical study, we illustrate that turnover penalization is more effective than commonly employed shrinkage methods and is crucial in order to construct empirically well-performing portfolios.
Some of my lecture notes for students: