if an investor wishes to close out a variance swap position before maturity, they must also consider any change in value of the exposure to volatility over the remainder of the variance swap term.

Indeed for variance swaps valued relatively soon after inception, this change in value of future expected variance can be the main driver of P&L, an especially important consideration for long dated variance swaps.


Marking to market of variance swaps is easy: variance is additive  -->  V(T) = V(t) + V(t,T)

At an intermediate point in the lifetime of a variance swap, the expected variance at maturity is simply the time-weighted sum of the variance realised over the time elapsed, and the implied variance over the remaining time to maturity.


All that is needed to compute the mark-to-market of a variance swap is:

  • The realised variance since the start of the swap

  • The implied variance from the present time until expiry


Since the variance swap is usually settled at maturity, a discount factor between now and expiry is also required. 


Vs mark to market


It is important to notice that the total remaining exposure to variance decreases linearly with time. 

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