Volatility Behaviour of Bitcoin as a Digital Asset Evidence of Shock Transmission Dynamics from the South African Financial Markets

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Thabo J. Gopane https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4182-7149


Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, Volatility spillover, Foreign exchange, Digital asset.


The objective of this study is to use the South African financial markets (Johannesburg Stock Exchange or JSE and USD/ZAR) as a case study to understand the volatility spillover dynamics of Bitcoin as a digital asset. Methodologically, the study applies the exponential generalized autoregressive conditional heteroskedastic (EGARCH) model, followed by a robustness check by applying the time-varying conditional correlation multivariate GARCH (VCC-MGARCH) model. The study utilizes the data set for the period 2011 to 2019, a period before the COVID‑19 pandemic. The research outcome revealed three interesting observations. First, Bitcoin and the South African stock market are independent of each other. Second, there is a bidirectional shock transmission between Bitcoin and USD/ZAR in the mean returns only, but not variance. Lastly, results confirm the existence of a bidirectional volatility spillover in both the mean and variance between the JSE stock market and the USD/ZAR market. The study outcome should enlighten investors who may want to consider Bitcoin as a diversifier in their investment and portfolio strategies.


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