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This thesis introduces a calibration problem for financial market models based on a Monte Carlo approximation of the option payoff and a discretization of the underlying stochastic differential equation. It is desirable to benefit from fast deterministic optimization methods to solve this problem. To be able to achieve this goal, possible non-differentiabilities are smoothed out with an appropriately chosen twice continuously differentiable polynomial. On the basis of this so derived calibration problem, this work is essentially concerned about two issues. First, the question occurs, if a computed solution of the approximating problem, derived by applying Monte Carlo, discretizing the SDE and preserving differentiability is an approximation of a solution of the true problem. Unfortunately, this does not hold in general but is linked to certain assumptions. It will turn out, that a uniform convergence of the approximated objective function and its gradient to the true objective and gradient can be shown under typical assumptions, for instance the Lipschitz continuity of the SDE coefficients. This uniform convergence then allows to show convergence of the solutions in the sense of a first order critical point. Furthermore, an order of this convergence in relation to the number of simulations, the step size for the SDE discretization and the parameter controlling the smooth approximation of non-differentiabilites will be shown. Additionally the uniqueness of a solution of the stochastic differential equation will be analyzed in detail. Secondly, the Monte Carlo method provides only a very slow convergence. The numerical results in this thesis will show, that the Monte Carlo based calibration indeed is feasible if one is concerned about the calculated solution, but the required calculation time is too long for practical applications. Thus, techniques to speed up the calibration are strongly desired. As already mentioned above, the gradient of the objective is a starting point to improve efficiency. Due to its simplicity, finite differences is a frequently chosen method to calculate the required derivatives. However, finite differences is well known to be very slow and furthermore, it will turn out, that there may also occur severe instabilities during optimization which may lead to the break down of the algorithm before convergence has been reached. In this manner a sensitivity equation is certainly an improvement but suffers unfortunately from the same computational effort as the finite difference method. Thus, an adjoint based gradient calculation will be the method of choice as it combines the exactness of the derivative with a reduced computational effort. Furthermore, several other techniques will be introduced throughout this thesis, that enhance the efficiency of the calibration algorithm. A multi-layer method will be very effective in the case, that the chosen initial value is not already close to the solution. Variance reduction techniques are helpful to increase accuracy of the Monte Carlo estimator and thus allow for fewer simulations. Storing instead of regenerating the random numbers required for the Brownian increments in the SDE will be efficient, as deterministic optimization methods anyway require to employ the identical random sequence in each function evaluation. Finally, Monte Carlo is very well suited for a parallelization, which will be done on several central processing units (CPUs).

This thesis is divided into three main parts: The description of the calibration problem, the numerical solution of this problem and the connection to optimal stochastic control problems. Fitting model prices to given market prices leads to an abstract least squares formulation as calibration problem. The corresponding option price can be computed by solving a stochastic differential equation via the Monte-Carlo method which seems to be preferred by most practitioners. Due to the fact that the Monte-Carlo method is expensive in terms of computational effort and requires memory, more sophisticated stochastic predictor-corrector schemes are established in this thesis. The numerical advantage of these predictor-corrector schemes ispresented and discussed. The adjoint method is applied to the calibration. The theoretical advantage of the adjoint method is discussed in detail. It is shown that the computational effort of gradient calculation via the adjoint method is independent of the number of calibration parameters. Numerical results confirm the theoretical results and summarize the computational advantage of the adjoint method. Furthermore, provides the connection to optimal stochastic control problems is proven in this thesis.