All posts by jgarven

Required Text Materials in Finance 4366

The required textbook for the Options, Futures, and Other Derivatives (Finance 4366) course at Baylor University (coincidentally) shares the same title as the course. Authored by University of Toronto finance professor John Hull, the “Options, Futures and Other Derivatives” textbook is now in its 10th edition, and it is very expensive; indeed, the campus bookstore currently offers used copies for $263, and new copies for $350.50 (see http://bit.ly/4366text).  Prices on Amazon are (not surprisingly) lower; e.g., as of December 2, 2019, new copies of the book are listed for $219 and used for $111.

Although I list the 10th (US) edition as “required” for Finance 4366 in the course syllabus, you are welcome to rely upon earlier (typically used and considerably less expensive) editions of this book; e.g., the 7th, 8th, and 9th (US and international) editions are completely acceptable substitutes, since the chapters that we cover in Finance 4366 are virtually identical across the 7th through 10th editions.  Just make sure that the book author (John C. Hull) and title (Options, Futures, and Other Derivatives) are the same, that the edition of the book is no earlier than the 7th edition, and that you are buying the textbook and not the solutions manual or instructors manual.

Finally, don’t worry about whether the book you buy or rent includes the “Derivagem” software.  Derivagem is an Excel spreadsheet template which you can download from the course website.

Instructions for subscribing to the Options, Futures and Other Derivatives Course Blog

A course blog has been established for Finance 4366 at the address http://derivatives.garven.com; it is also linked from the “Course Blog” button located on the course website. I recommend that you follow the options, futures, and other derivatives course blog regularly via email, Facebook, and/or Twitter.

The options, futures, and other derivatives course blog provides me with a convenient means for distributing important announcements to the class. Topics covered on the course blog typically include things like changes in the course schedule, clarifications and hints concerning problem sets, information about upcoming exams, announcements concerning extra credit opportunities, and short blurbs showing how current events relate to many of the topics which we cover in Finance 4366.

If you are either a Facebook or Twitter user, everything that is posted on the options, futures, and other derivatives course blog is automatically posted to Facebook and “tweeted”, so you can also subscribe by “liking” the Finance 4366 Facebook page or by “following” @fin4366 on Twitter. Finally, you can also subscribe via email. The remainder of this blog entry explains how to subscribe to the options, futures, and other derivatives course blog via email.

Email Subscription Instructions:

Email Subscription Instructions: If you would like to receive the risk management course blog via email, you can do this by going to http://derivatives.garven.com and entering your email address in the form provided on the right hand side of that webpage:

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After clicking “Subscribe”, the following information will appear on your screen:

derivatives.garven.com success

Next, check for an email from “Options, Futures, and Other Derivatives <donotreply@wordpress.com>”:

Please confirm

Next, simply click the “Confirm Follow” button. This will cause you to receive the following email:

Confirmed

From that point forward, whenever I post to the course blog, you will immediately receive a nicely formatted version of the blog posting via email. Also, you can opt to change your delivery preferences, or even cancel your subscription.

Calculus and Probability & Statistics recommendations…

Since many of the topics covered in Finance 4366 require a basic knowledge and comfort level with algebra, differential calculus and probability & statistics, the second class meeting during the spring 2019 semester will include a mathematics tutorial, and the third and fourth class meetings will cover probability & statistics. I know of no better online resource for brushing up on (or learning for the first time) these topics than the Khan Academy.

So here are my suggestions for Khan Academy videos which cover these topics (unless otherwise noted, all sections included in the links which follow are recommended):

Finally, if your algebra skills are generally a bit on the rusty side, I would also recommend checking out the Khan Academy’s review of algebra.