The geometry of multi-marginal Skorokhod Embedding

Mathias Beiglboeck, Alexander Cox, Martin Huesmann

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The Skorokhod Embedding Problem is one of the classical problems in the theory of stochastic processes, with applications in many different fields [cf. the surveys (Hobson in: Paris-Princeton lectures on mathematical finance 2010, Volume 2003 of Lecture Notes in Mathematics, Springer, Berlin, 2011; Obłój in: Probab Surv 1:321–390, 2004)]. Many of these applications have natural multi-marginal extensions leading to the (optimal) multi-marginal Skorokhod problem. Some of the first papers to consider this problem are Brown et al. (Probab Theory Relat Fields 119(4):558–578, 2001), Hobson (Séminaire de Probabilités, XXXII, Volume 1686 of Lecture Notes in Mathematics, Springer, Berlin, 1998), Madan and Yor (Bernoulli 8(4):509–536, 2002). However, this turns out to be difficult using existing techniques: only recently a complete solution was be obtained in Cox et al. (Probab Theory Relat Fields 173:211–259, 2018) establishing an extension of the Root construction, while other instances are only partially answered or remain wide open. In this paper, we extend the theory developed in Beiglböck et al. (Invent Math 208(2):327–400, 2017) to the multi-marginal setup which is comparable to the extension of the optimal transport problem to the multi-marginal optimal transport problem. As for the one-marginal case, this viewpoint turns out to be very powerful. In particular, we are able to show that all classical optimal embeddings have natural multi-marginal counterparts. Notably these different constructions are linked through a joint geometric structure and the classical solutions are recovered as particular cases. Moreover, our results also have consequences for the study of the martingale transport problem as well as the peacock problem.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1045-1096
Number of pages52
JournalProbability Theory and Related Fields
Issue number3-4
Early online date1 Aug 2019
Publication statusPublished - 30 Apr 2020


  • math.PR
  • q-fin.PR
  • 60G42, 60G44, 91G20


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