Harley Bassman, The Convexity Maven


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There is but one Convexity Maven in the world, a moniker that belongs uniquely to Harley Bassman. A 35 year career in financial markets has left Harley steeped in all things relating to the price of and characteristics of optionality.

Our discussion on this episode of the Alpha Exchange starts with the early days of his career, including a position in Treasury option markets in the early 1980s. Juxtapose that experience - when rates and inflation were sky high - with his more recent market presence when rates and rate vol have rarely been lower - and one can appreciate the breadth of experience Harley has had.

Our conversation covers the term structure of rate volatility, the variance risk premium and the way in which option sellers convert potential future capital gains to present day income. Along the way, we discuss the MOVE index, a well-followed metric for bond option volatility that Harley designed, as he explains how the MOVE is tied the slope of the yield curve. Lastly, Harley shares his views on global disinflation and what Central Banks are up against. Please enjoy this episode of the Alpha Exchange, my discussion with Harley Bassman.

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