Editorial Director
Managing Editor
Issue Q3 2010  
Are Derivatives Dangerous? A Literature Survey  
Gunther Capelle-Blancard
In this paper, we propose a survey of the academic literature that has addressed the threats raised by derivatives. An initial issue is the impact of derivatives on the volatility of the underlying assets, but empirical findings do not suggest any significant effect. The recent literature on the dangers of derivatives is more concerned by systemic risks. Several studies suggest that the sophistication of the products and the concentration of risks are potential sources of instability because of the increasing uncertainty, the repeated occurrence of extreme losses, and finally the greater possibility of global crisis. Among the solutions that have been proposed to mitigate risk, beyond strengthening internal control, putting clearinghouses into general use and limiting naked-transactions seem to be the most promising avenues. Abstract

Derivatives ; Forwards ; Futures ; Financial innovation ; Speculation ; OTC markets ; Financial instability ; Keywords
A1 ; D8 ; G1 ; JEL classification
Order form