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Exact confidence sets and goodness-of-fit methods for stable distributions


  • Beaulieu, Marie-Claude
  • Dufour, Jean-Marie
  • Khalaf, Lynda


Usual inference methods for stable distributions are typically based on limit distributions. But asymptotic approximations can easily be unreliable in such cases, for standard regularity conditions may not apply or may hold only weakly. This paper proposes finite-sample tests and confidence sets for tail thickness and asymmetry parameters (α and β) of stable distributions. The confidence sets are built by inverting exact goodness-of-fit tests for hypotheses which assign specific values to these parameters. We propose extensions of the Kolmogorov–Smirnov, Shapiro–Wilk and Filliben criteria, as well as the quantile-based statistics proposed by McCulloch (1986) in order to better capture tail behavior. The suggested criteria compare empirical goodness-of-fit or quantile-based measures with their hypothesized values. Since the distributions involved are quite complex and non-standard, the relevant hypothetical measures are approximated by simulation, and p-values are obtained using Monte Carlo (MC) test techniques. The properties of the proposed procedures are investigated by simulation. In contrast with conventional wisdom, we find reliable results with sample sizes as small as 25. The proposed methodology is applied to daily electricity price data in the US over the period 2001–2006. The results show clearly that heavy kurtosis and asymmetry are prevalent in these series.

Suggested Citation

  • Beaulieu, Marie-Claude & Dufour, Jean-Marie & Khalaf, Lynda, 2014. "Exact confidence sets and goodness-of-fit methods for stable distributions," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 181(1), pages 3-14.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:econom:v:181:y:2014:i:1:p:3-14
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jeconom.2014.02.003

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Dufour, Jean-Marie & Kiviet, Jan F., 1996. "Exact tests for structural change in first-order dynamic models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 70(1), pages 39-68, January.
    2. Kiviet, Jan F. & Dufour, Jean-Marie, 1997. "Exact tests in single equation autoregressive distributed lag models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 80(2), pages 325-353, October.
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    5. Marie-Claude Beaulieu & Jean-Marie Dufour & Lynda Khalaf, 2013. "Identification-Robust Estimation and Testing of the Zero-Beta CAPM," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 80(3), pages 892-924.
    6. BEAULIEU, Marie-Claude & DUFOUR, Jean-Marie & KHALAF, Lynda, 2005. "Exact Multivariate Tests of Asset Pricing Models with Stable Asymmetric Distributions," Cahiers de recherche 2005-04, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
    7. Dufour, Jean-Marie, 1989. "Nonlinear Hypotheses, Inequality Restrictions, and Non-nested Hypotheses: Exact Simultaneous Tests in Linear Regressions," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(2), pages 335-355, March.
    8. Dufour, Jean-Marie & Khalaf, Lynda & Bernard, Jean-Thomas & Genest, Ian, 2004. "Simulation-based finite-sample tests for heteroskedasticity and ARCH effects," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 122(2), pages 317-347, October.
    9. Jean‐Marie Dufour & Lynda Khalaf & Marie‐Claude Beaulieu, 2003. "Exact Skewness–Kurtosis Tests for Multivariate Normality and Goodness‐of‐Fit in Multivariate Regressions with Application to Asset Pricing Models," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 65(s1), pages 891-906, December.
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