Day-of-the-month effects in the performance of momentum trading strategies in the foreign exchange market
Harris, Richard D. F.
University of Exeter; University of Bristol; Bank of America
Journal of Trading
University of Exeter
This article documents a very strong day-of-the-month effect in the performance of momentum strategies in the foreign exchange market. It shows that this seasonality in trading strategy performance is attributable to seasonality in the conditional volatility of foreign exchange returns, and in the volatility of conditional volatility. Indeed, a two-factor model employing conditional volatility and the volatility of conditional volatility explains as much as 70% of the intra-month variation in the Sharpe ratio. The article further shows that the seasonality in volatility is in turn closely linked to the pattern of U.S. macroeconomic news announcements, which tend to be clustered around certain days of the month.
Draft version dated October 2008; due for publication in Journal of Trading, Winter 2009