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Ridge estimation of inverse covariance matrices from high-dimensional data


  • van Wieringen, Wessel N.
  • Peeters, Carel F.W.


The ridge estimation of the precision matrix is investigated in the setting where the number of variables is large relative to the sample size. First, two archetypal ridge estimators are reviewed and it is noted that their penalties do not coincide with common quadratic ridge penalties. Subsequently, starting from a proper ℓ2-penalty, analytic expressions are derived for two alternative ridge estimators of the precision matrix. The alternative estimators are compared to the archetypes with regard to eigenvalue shrinkage and risk. The alternatives are also compared to the graphical lasso within the context of graphical modeling. The comparisons may give reason to prefer the proposed alternative estimators.

Suggested Citation

  • van Wieringen, Wessel N. & Peeters, Carel F.W., 2016. "Ridge estimation of inverse covariance matrices from high-dimensional data," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 103(C), pages 284-303.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:csdana:v:103:y:2016:i:c:p:284-303
    DOI: 10.1016/j.csda.2016.05.012

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ledoit, Olivier & Wolf, Michael, 2004. "A well-conditioned estimator for large-dimensional covariance matrices," Journal of Multivariate Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 88(2), pages 365-411, February.
    2. Peter Bickel & Bo Li & Alexandre Tsybakov & Sara Geer & Bin Yu & Teófilo Valdés & Carlos Rivero & Jianqing Fan & Aad Vaart, 2006. "Regularization in statistics," TEST: An Official Journal of the Spanish Society of Statistics and Operations Research, Springer;Sociedad de Estadística e Investigación Operativa, vol. 15(2), pages 271-344, September.
    3. Warton, David I., 2008. "Penalized Normal Likelihood and Ridge Regularization of Correlation and Covariance Matrices," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 103, pages 340-349, March.
    4. Joong-Ho Won & Johan Lim & Seung-Jean Kim & Bala Rajaratnam, 2013. "Condition-number-regularized covariance estimation," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series B, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 75(3), pages 427-450, June.
    5. Daniela M. Witten & Robert Tibshirani, 2009. "Covariance‐regularized regression and classification for high dimensional problems," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series B, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 71(3), pages 615-636, June.
    6. Ming Yuan & Yi Lin, 2007. "Model selection and estimation in the Gaussian graphical model," Biometrika, Biometrika Trust, vol. 94(1), pages 19-35.
    7. Ledoit, Olivier & Wolf, Michael, 2003. "Improved estimation of the covariance matrix of stock returns with an application to portfolio selection," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 10(5), pages 603-621, December.
    8. Michael J. Daniels & Robert E. Kass, 2001. "Shrinkage Estimators for Covariance Matrices," Biometrics, The International Biometric Society, vol. 57(4), pages 1173-1184, December.
    9. Schäfer Juliane & Strimmer Korbinian, 2005. "A Shrinkage Approach to Large-Scale Covariance Matrix Estimation and Implications for Functional Genomics," Statistical Applications in Genetics and Molecular Biology, De Gruyter, vol. 4(1), pages 1-32, November.
    10. Gérard Letac & Hélène Massam, 2004. "All Invariant Moments of the Wishart Distribution," Scandinavian Journal of Statistics, Danish Society for Theoretical Statistics;Finnish Statistical Society;Norwegian Statistical Association;Swedish Statistical Association, vol. 31(2), pages 295-318, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. van Wieringen, Wessel N., 2017. "On the mean squared error of the ridge estimator of the covariance and precision matrix," Statistics & Probability Letters, Elsevier, vol. 123(C), pages 88-92.


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