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On Jeffreys Prior when Using the Exact Likelihood Function

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  • Uhlig, Harald

Abstract

In this paper, we calculate Jeffreys prior for an AR(1) process with and without a constant and a time trend when using the exact likelihood function. We show how this prior can be calculated for the explosive region, even though the unconditional variance of the process is infinite. The calculations lend additional support to the Schotman-van Dijk [6] procedure for restricting the location and the variance of the time trend coefficient. The results show that flat priors are reasonable for the nonexplosive region in an AR(1) without a constant and a time trend where the variance is known and the initial observation is zero, i.e., for the special case studied by Sims and Uhlig [7]. Differences to a flat prior analysis remain in particular for nonzero initial observations, however. For the explosive region, the unconditional prior diverges as the root diverges, supporting findings by Phillips [4]. This paper thus provides a useful perspective as well as some reconciliation for the different stands taken in the literature about priors and Bayesian inference for potentially nonstationary time series.

Suggested Citation

  • Uhlig, Harald, 1994. "On Jeffreys Prior when Using the Exact Likelihood Function," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 10(3-4), pages 633-644, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:etheor:v:10:y:1994:i:3-4:p:633-644_00
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    1. Geweke, John, 1989. "Bayesian Inference in Econometric Models Using Monte Carlo Integration," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(6), pages 1317-1339, November.
    2. Phillips, P C B, 1991. "To Criticize the Critics: An Objective Bayesian Analysis of Stochastic Trends," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 6(4), pages 333-364, Oct.-Dec..
    3. Geweke, John, 1988. "Antithetic acceleration of Monte Carlo integration in Bayesian inference," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 38(1-2), pages 73-89.
    4. Kloek, Tuen & van Dijk, Herman K, 1978. "Bayesian Estimates of Equation System Parameters: An Application of Integration by Monte Carlo," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(1), pages 1-19, January.
    5. DeJong, David N. & Whiteman, Charles H., 1991. "Reconsidering 'trends and random walks in macroeconomic time series'," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 221-254, October.
    6. Thomas Doan & Robert B. Litterman & Christopher A. Sims, 1983. "Forecasting and Conditional Projection Using Realistic Prior Distributions," NBER Working Papers 1202, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Perron, Pierre, 1989. "The Great Crash, the Oil Price Shock, and the Unit Root Hypothesis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(6), pages 1361-1401, November.
    8. Schotman, Peter & van Dijk, Herman K., 1991. "A Bayesian analysis of the unit root in real exchange rates," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1-2), pages 195-238.
    9. Schotman, Peter C & van Dijk, Herman K, 1991. "On Bayesian Routes to Unit Roots," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 6(4), pages 387-401, Oct.-Dec..
    10. Geweke, John F, 1986. "The Superneutrality of Money in the United States: An Interpretation of the Evidence," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(1), pages 1-21, January.
    11. Nelson, Charles R. & Plosser, Charles I., 1982. "Trends and random walks in macroeconmic time series : Some evidence and implications," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 139-162.
    12. Sims, Christopher A & Stock, James H & Watson, Mark W, 1990. "Inference in Linear Time Series Models with Some Unit Roots," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(1), pages 113-144, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Charley Xia and William Griffiths, 2012. "Bayesian Unit Root Testing: The Effect Of Choice Of Prior On Test Outcomes," Department of Economics - Working Papers Series 1152, The University of Melbourne.
    2. Moon, Hyungsik R. & Phillips, Peter C.B., 2000. "Estimation Of Autoregressive Roots Near Unity Using Panel Data," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 16(06), pages 927-997, December.
    3. Jessica A. Wachter, 2010. "Asset Allocation," Annual Review of Financial Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 2(1), pages 175-206, December.
    4. Stambaugh, Robert F., 1999. "Predictive regressions," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(3), pages 375-421, December.
    5. Marriott, John & Newbold, Paul, 2000. "The strength of evidence for unit autoregressive roots and structural breaks: A Bayesian perspective," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 98(1), pages 1-25, September.
    6. Santiago García Verdú, 2010. "Equilibrium yield curves under regime switching," Working Papers 2010-08, Banco de México.
    7. Jarociński, Marek & Marcet, Albert, 2010. "Autoregressions in small samples, priors about observables and initial conditions," Working Paper Series 1263, European Central Bank.
    8. Peter C. B. Phillips & Hyungsik R. Moon, 1999. "Linear Regression Limit Theory for Nonstationary Panel Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 67(5), pages 1057-1112, September.
    9. Marek Jarocinski & Albert Marcet, 2014. "Contrasting Bayesian and Frequentist Approaches to Autoregressions: the Role of the Initial Condition," Working Papers 776, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
    10. repec:eee:ecosta:v:4:y:2017:i:c:p:70-90 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Kociecki, Andrzej, 2012. "Orbital Priors for Time-Series Models," MPRA Paper 42804, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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