© 2005

A Course in Derivative Securities

Introduction to Theory and Computation


  • The book is unusual in combining derivations of the pricing and hedging formulas, computer code implementing the formulas, and an introduction to computational methods

  • The computational tools supplement the theory, allowing the inclusion of exercises of a practical nature

  • Has a broad coverage of derivatives and can be used either for courses emphasizing computation or for courses emphasizing theory

  • Uses almost exclusively the probabilistic (change of numeraire) approach, which is developed in the first chapter

  • The VBA code is available in an Excel workbook, which includes examples of all of the functions (available on the internet)


Part of the Springer Finance book series (FINANCE)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages I-XV
  2. Introduction to Option Pricing

  3. Advanced Option Pricing

  4. Fixed Income

  5. Back Matter
    Pages 319-355

About this book


This book aims at a middle ground between the introductory books on derivative securities and those that provide advanced mathematical treatments. It is written for mathematically capable students who have not necessarily had prior exposure to probability theory, stochastic calculus, or computer programming. It provides derivations of pricing and hedging formulas (using the probabilistic change of numeraire technique) for standard options, exchange options, options on forwards and futures, quanto options, exotic options, caps, floors and swaptions, as well as VBA code implementing the formulas. It also contains an introduction to Monte Carlo, binomial models, and finite-difference methods.


Asset Pricing Derivative Securities Futures Option Pricing Options Probability theory Volatility linear optimization

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Finance, Mays Business SchoolTexas A&M UniversityCollege StationUSA

About the authors

Kerry Back holds the Jerry and Kay Cox Professorship of Business and the Thomas W. Leland Memorial Professorship of Finance at Texas A&M University. Before joining Texas A&M in 2005, he was a chaired professor at Washington University in St. Louis. His awards and honors include a Batterymarch Fellowship (1991-92), a best paper award at the Review of Financial Studies (1993) the Reid Teaching Award at Washington University in St. Louis (1997, 1998, 1999, 2001), and the Washington University Distinguished Faculty Award (1999). He is a past editor of the Review of Financial Studies and is currently co-editor of Finance and Stochastics and an associate editor of the Journal of Finance.

Bibliographic information

Industry Sectors
Chemical Manufacturing
Finance, Business & Banking
Consumer Packaged Goods


From the reviews of the first edition:

"Professor Back has written a superb book on advanced derivatives. The book provides wonderfully clear explanations without sacrificing mathematical accuracy. I highly recommend this book for everyone who wants to understand more about this fascinating and important area."
(Mark Broadie, Columbia University, New York)
Professor Kerry Back's book fills a void in the derivative literature by providing an excellent and much needed book for a second course in derivatives. The clear presentation and the choice of VBA as the software tool makes this a perfect textbook for such a course. Using VBA via excel is an excellent choice as it exhibits an "open source" environment that is readily available for users."
(Eliezer Z. Prisman, York University, Toronto)

"This book deals with pricing and hedging financial derivatives. … Computational methods are introduced and the text contains the Excel VBA routines corresponding to the formulas and procedures described in the book. This is valuable since computer simulation can help readers understand the theory. … The book under review succeeds in presenting intuitively advanced derivative modelling … . In my opinion, it provides a useful bridge between introductory books and the more advanced literature." (Benjamin Jourdain, Mathematical Reviews, Issue 2006 h)

"This book contains a practical introduction to the mathematics of financial engineering. It can serve as an excellent bridge between the introductory books on derivative securities and those that provide advanced mathematical treatments. … the book presents a very wide spectrum of the problems and methods concerned with pricing and hedging derivatives in a quite accessible way. … it can be strongly recommended not only to be used as a course but also for those wishing to train themselves in this field." (Malgorzata Doman, Zentralblatt MATH, Vol. 1085, 2006)

"The strength of this book is in its clarity in exposition of the complex … modern financial mathematics. The book is self-contained, and a student can learn the key elements of the main toolkits in financial engineering … . Further, the book provides useful exercises and VBA programs so that the students can simulate the results … . I recommend the book to an MBA program … . The book could also be used in some master programs in financial engineering and mathematical finance." (Thomas S. Y. Ho, SIAM Review, Vol. 48 (3), 2006)