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Definition of Divergence

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When two or more averages or indices fail to show confirming trends.

Related Terms:

Currency arbitrage

Taking advantage of divergences in exchange rates in different money markets by
buying a currency in one market and selling it in another market.

Index arbitrage

An investment/trading strategy that exploits divergences between actual and theoretical
futures prices.


The simultaneous buying and selling of a security at two different prices in two different markets,
resulting in profits without risk. Perfectly efficient markets present no arbitrage opportunities. Perfectly
efficient markets seldom exist.


The purchase of securities on one market for immediate resale on
another market in order to profit from a price or currency discrepancy.


Transactions designed to make a sure profit from inconsistent prices.

Arbitrage-free option-pricing models

Yield curve option-pricing models.

Arbitrage Pricing Theory (APT)

An alternative model to the capital asset pricing model developed by
Stephen Ross and based purely on arbitrage arguments.

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People who search for and exploit arbitrage opportunities.

Arms index

Also known as a trading index (TRIN)= (number of advancing issues)/ (number of declining
issues) (Total up volume )/ (total down volume). An advance/decline market indicator. Less than 1.0 indicates
bullish demand, while above 1.0 is bearish. The index often is smoothed with a simple moving average.

Asian currency units (ACUs)

Dollar deposits held in Singapore or other Asian centers.

Blocked currency

A currency that is not freely convertible to other currencies due to exchange controls.

Bond indexing

Designing a portfolio so that its performance will match the performance of some bond index.

Buying the index

Purchasing the stocks in the S&P 500 in the same proportion as the index to achieve the
same return.

Consumer Price Index (CPI)

The CPI, as it is called, measures the prices of consumer goods and services and is a
measure of the pace of U.S. inflation. The U.S.Department of Labor publishes the CPI very month.

Consumer Price Index (CPI)

An index calculated by tracking the cost of a typical bundle of consumer goods and services over time. It is commonly used to measure inflation.

Covered interest arbitrage

A portfolio manager invests dollars in an instrument denominated in a foreign
currency and hedges his resulting foreign exchange risk by selling the proceeds of the investment forward for

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Currency basket

The value of a portfolio of specific amounts of individual currencies, used as the basis for
setting the market value of another currency. It is also referred to as a currency cocktail.

Currency future

A financial future contract for the delivery of a specified foreign currency.

Currency option

An option to buy or sell a foreign currency.

Currency risk

Related: Exchange rate risk

Currency risk sharing

An agreement by the parties to a transaction to share the currency risk associated with
the transaction. The arrangement involves a customized hedge contract embedded in the underlying

Currency selection

Asset allocation in which the investor chooses among investments denominated in
different currencies.

Currency swap

An agreement to swap a series of specified payment obligations denominated in one currency
for a series of specified payment obligations denominated in a different currency.

Devaluation A decrease in the spot price of the currency

Dual-currency issues

Eurobonds that pay coupon interest in one currency but pay the principal in a different

EAFE index

The European, Australian, and Far East stock index, computed by Morgan Stanley.

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Enhanced indexing

Also called indexing plus, an indexing strategy whose objective is to exceed or replicate
the total return performance of some predetermined index.

Eurocurrency deposit

A short-term fixed rate time deposit denominated in a currency other than the local
currency (i.e. US$ deposited in a London bank).

Eurocurrency market

The money market for borrowing and lending currencies that are held in the form of
deposits in banks located outside the countries of the currencies issued as legal tender.

European Currency Unit (ECU)

An index of foreign exchange consisting of about 10 European currencies,
originally devised in 1979.

Foreign currency

Foreign money.

Foreign currency option

An option that conveys the right to buy or sell a specified amount of foreign
currency at a specified price within a specified time period.

Foreign currency translation

The process of restating foreign currency accounts of subsidiaries into the
reporting currency of the parent company in order to prepare consolidated financial statements.

Hard currency

A freely convertible currency that is not expected to depreciate in value in the foreseeable future.


A series of numbers measuring percentage changes over time from a base period. The index number for the base period is by convention set equal to 100.
Linking money payments to a price index to hold the real value of those money payments constant.


An index is a statistical measure of a market based on the performance of a sample of securities in that market. For example, the S&P/TSX Composite index reflects the performance of the most actively traded stocks on The Toronto Stock Exchange.

Index and Option Market (IOM)

A division of the CME established in 1982 for trading stock index
products and options. Related: Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME).

Index fund

Investment fund designed to match the returns on a stockmarket index.

index funds

Mutual funds that aim to track the performance of a specific stock or bond index. This process is also referred to as indexing and passive management.

Index model

A model of stock returns using a market index such as the S&P 500 to represent common or
systematic risk factors.

Index option

A call or put option based on a stock market index.

Index Portfolio Rebalancing Service (IPRS)

index Portfolio Rebalancing Service (IPRS) is a comprehensive investment service that can help increase potential returns while reducing volatility. Several portfolios are available, each with its own strategic balance of index Funds. IPRS maintains your personal asset allocation by monitoring and rebalancing your portfolio semi-annually.

Index warrant

A stock index option issued by either a corporate or sovereign entity as part of a security
offering, and guaranteed by an option clearing corporation.


The adjustment of benefits to compensate for the effects of inflation.

Indexed bond

Bond whose payments are linked to an index, e.g. the consumer price index.


A passive instrument strategy consisting of the construction of a portfolio of stocks designed to
track the total return performance of an index of stocks.

Jensen index

An index that uses the capital asset pricing model to determine whether a money manager
outperformed a market index. The "alpha" of an investment or investment manager.

market index

Measure of the investment performance of the overall market.

Market value-weighted index

An index of a group of securities computed by calculating a weighted average
of the returns on each security in the index, with the weights proportional to outstanding market value.

Multicurrency clause

Such a clause on a Euro loan permits the borrower to switch from one currency to
another currency on a rollover date.

Multicurrency loans

Give the borrower the possibility of drawing a loan in different currencies.

Optimization approach to indexing

An approach to indexing which seeks to Optimize some objective, such
as to maximize the portfolio yield, to maximize convexity, or to maximize expected total returns.

present value index

see profitability index

Price Index

A measure of the price level calculated by comparing the cost of a bundle of goods and services in a given year with its cost in a base year. See also index.

Profitability index

The present value of the future cash flows divided by the initial investment. Also called
the benefit-cost ratio.

Profitability index

See cash value added.

Profitability Index

A method for determining the profitability of an investment. It is
calculated by dividing the present value of the future net cash flows
by the initial cash investment.

profitability index

Ratio of net present value to initial investment.

profitability index (Pl)

a ratio that compares the present value of net cash flows to the present value of the net investment

Pure index fund

A portfolio that is managed so as to perfectly replicate the performance of the market portfolio.

Reporting currency

The currency in which the parent firm prepares its own financial statements; that is, U.S.
dollars for a U.S. company.

Reserve currency

A foreign currency held by a central bank or monetary authority for the purposes of
exchange intervention and the settlement of inter-governmental claims.

Reserve Currency

A currency, frequently the U.S. dollar, that is used by other countries to denominate the assets they hold as international reserves.

Risk arbitrage

Speculation on perceived mispriced securities, usually in connection with merger and
acquisition deals. Mike Donatelli, John Demasi, Frank Cohane, and Scott Lewis are all hardcore arbs. They
had a huge BT/MCI position in the summer of 1997, and came out smelling like roses.

Risk controlled arbitrage

A self-funding, self-hedged series of transactions that generally utilize mortgage
securities as the primary assets.

Risk indexes

Categories of risk used to calculate fundamental beta, including (1) market variability, (2)
earnings variability, (3) low valuation, (4) immaturity and smallness, (5) growth orientation, and (6) financial risk.

Riskless arbitrage

The simultaneous purchase and sale of the same asset to yield a profit.

Single index model

A model of stock returns that decomposes influences on returns into a systematic factor,
as measured by the return on the broad market index, and firm specific factors.

Single-index model

Related: market model

Soft currency

A currency that is expected to drop in value relative to other currencies.

Standard & Poor’s Composite Index

index of the investment performance of a portfolio of 500 large stocks. Also called the
S&P 500.

Stock index option

An option in which the underlying is a common stock index.

Stratified equity indexing

A method of constructing a replicating portfolio in which the stocks in the index
are classified into stratum, and each stratum is represented in the portfolio.

Stratified sampling approach to indexing

An approach in which the index is divided into cells, each
representing a different characteristic of the index, such as duration or maturity.

Stratified sampling bond indexing

A method of bond indexing that divides the index into cells, each cell
representing a different characteristic, and that buys bonds to match those characteristics.

Strike index

For a stock index option, the index value at which the buyer of the option can buy or sell the
underlying stock index. The strike index is converted to a dollar value by multiplying by the option's contract multiple.
Related: strike price

Structured arbitrage transaction

A self-funding, self-hedged series of transactions that usually utilize
mortgage securities as the primary assets.

Treynor Index

A measure of the excess return per unit of risk, where excess return is defined as the
difference between the portfolio's return and the risk-free rate of return over the same evaluation period and
where the unit of risk is the portfolio's beta.

Triangular arbitrage

Striking offsetting deals among three markets simultaneously to obtain an arbitrage profit.

Virtual currency option

A new option contract introduced by the PHLX in 1994 that is settled in US$ rather
than in the underlying currency. These options are also called 3-Ds (dollar denominated delivery).







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