AgPa #26: Trading on Price Charts

(Re-)Imag(in)ing Price Trends (2022)
Jingwen Jiang, Bryan T. Kelly, Dacheng Xiu
The Journal of Finance, Forthcoming, URL

This week’s AGNOSTIC Paper is about technical analysis. Full disclosure: I never believed in technical analysis in the sense of drawing lines on charts or imagining somewhat arbitrary patterns.

But the approach of this week’s authors is quite different. They borrow methodology from image recognition and train a machine learning model to detect predictive patterns in price charts (Yes, the machine receives the price chart as picture, not the underlying numbers!)…

  • The model identifies very profitable short-term signals
  • The signals are also profitable over longer horizons
  • Some of the machine-learning-signals are explainable
  • The model disagrees with conventional technical analysis

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AgPa #8: Neuroscientific Insights for Alpha

Harnessing Neuroscientific Insights to Generate Alpha (2022)
Elise Payzan-LeNestour, James Doran, Lionnel Pradier, Tālis J. Putniņš
Financial Analysts Journal, 78(2), 79-95, URL

We are all prone to psychological biases that are very hard to control. This week’s AGNOSTIC Paper examines the after-effect, one particular example for this.

The idea of the after-effect is simple. If you are long enough exposed to a certain stimuli, you will have the illusion of the exact opposite stimuli after the first one disappears. Apparently, this pattern was very relevant for the US stock market…

  • The after-effect distorted the VIX Index
  • Exploiting the after-effect yielded significant alpha

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AgPa #7: Spotify Streaming and Stock Returns

Music sentiment and stock returns around the world (2021)
Alex Edmans, Adrian Fernandez-Perez, Alexandre Garel, Ivan Indriawan
Journal of Financial Economics, In Press, Corrected Proof, URL

This week’s AGNOSTIC Paper examines the role of music sentiment in the stock market. What sounds like statistical hocus-pocus is part of an important question. Do other factors than rational information drive stock markets?

I like the paper for its creative use of alternative data and its clean methodology. But to be honest, I was somewhat skeptical when I first heard about it. However, the authors present an intuitive economic rationale and rigorously test their hypotheses in various robustness checks. The results are quite interesting…

  • Music sentiment is related to stock market returns
  • Music sentiment is more important in less efficient markets
  • Music sentiment is also related to fund flows and bond market returns

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