Fundamental Risk Factors of Financial Markets
The fundamental risk factors in financial markets are the market parameters which determine the price of the financial instruments being traded. They include foreign currency exchange rates and the price of commodities and stocks and, of course, interest rates. Fluctuations in these fundamental risks induce fluctuations in the prices of the financial instruments which they underlie. They constitute an inherent market risk in the financial instruments and are therefore referred to as risk factors. The risk factors of a financial instrument are the market parameters (interest rates, foreign currency exchange rates, commodity and stock prices), which, through their fluctuation, produce a change in the price of the financial instrument. The above mentioned risk factors do not exhaust the list of the possible risk factors associated with a financial instrument nor do all risk factors affect the price of each instrument; for example, the value of a 5-year coupon bond in Swiss Francs is not determined by the current market price of gold. The first step in risk management is thus to identify the relevant risk factors of a specified financial instrument.
KeywordsInterest Rate Random Walk Financial Market Discount Factor Internal Model
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