Yiran Cui, Sebastian Del Baño Rollin, Guido Germano

Usually, in the Black-Scholes pricing theory the volatility is a positive real parameter. Here we explore what happens if it is allowed to be a complex number. The function for pricing a European option with a complex volatility has essential singularities at zero and infinity. The singularity at zero reflects the put- call parity. Solving for the implied volatility that reproduces a given market price yields not only a real root, but also infinitely many complex roots in a neighbourhood of the origin. The Newton-Raphson calculation of the complex implied volatility has a chaotic nature described by fractals.