He is a senior academic in the field of finance, focusing on derivatives, particularly options, and is probably best known for his contributions to financial theory and practice such as portfolio insurance and the binomial options pricing model (also known as the Cox-Ross-Rubinstein model), as well as his work on discrete time stochastic calculus. Along with fellow Berkeley finance professor Hayne E. Leland, Rubinstein developed the portfolio insurance financial product in 1976. This strategy later became associated with the October 19, 1987, Stock Market Crash. Rubinstein popularized the term "exotic option" in 1990/92 working paper "Exotic Options" (with Eric Reiner), with the term based either on exotic wagers in Horse racing, or due to the use of international terms such as "Asian option", suggesting the "exotic Orient".
He is involved in teaching courses in the Haas/Berkeley Master of Financial Engineering (MFE) Program , an academic program that is focused on equipping candidates with skills in financial engineering for careers as financial quantitative analysts. He has been instrumental in building the program, considered by many as the number one financial engineering program in the US. The Berkeley MFE Program has been ranked #1 by Global Derivatives and named one of the top 10 quant schools by Advanced Trading magazine. He has been on the Haas faculty since 1972.
- The Evolution of Portfolio Insurance
- Palmer, Brian (July 14, 2010), Why Do We Call Financial Instruments "Exotic"? Because some of them are from Japan., Slate
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