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Predictable Return Distributions

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  • Thomas Q. Pedersen

Abstract

This paper provides detailed insights into predictability of the entire stock and bond return distribution through the use of quantile regression. This allows us to examine speci?c parts of the return distribution such as the tails or the center, and for a suf?ciently ?ne grid of quantiles we can trace out the entire distribution. A univariate quantile regression model is used to examine stock and bond return distributions individually, while a multivariate model is used to capture their joint distribution. An empirical analysis on US data shows that certain parts of the return distributions are predictable as a function of economic state variables. The results are, however, very different for stocks and bonds. The state variables primarily predict only location shifts in the stock return distribution, while they also predict changes in higher-order moments in the bond return distribution. Out-of-sample analyses show that the relative accuracy of the state variables in predicting future returns varies across the distribution. A portfolio study shows that an investor with power utility can obtain economic gains by applying the empirical return distribution in portfolio decisions instead of imposing an assumption of lognormally distributed returns.
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Suggested Citation

  • Thomas Q. Pedersen, 2015. "Predictable Return Distributions," Journal of Forecasting, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 34(2), pages 114-132, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:jforec:v:34:y:2015:i:2:p:114-132
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    Cited by:

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    2. Gebka, Bartosz & Wohar, Mark E., 2019. "Stock return distribution and predictability: Evidence from over a century of daily data on the DJIA index," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 1-25.
    3. Aslanidis, Nektarios & Christiansen, Charlotte, 2014. "Quantiles of the realized stock–bond correlation and links to the macroeconomy," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(C), pages 321-331.
    4. Anatolyev, Stanislav & Baruník, Jozef, 2019. "Forecasting dynamic return distributions based on ordered binary choice," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 823-835.
    5. Pierdzioch, Christian & Risse, Marian & Rohloff, Sebastian, 2016. "A quantile-boosting approach to forecasting gold returns," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 38-55.
    6. Demirer, Riza & Pierdzioch, Christian & Zhang, Huacheng, 2017. "On the short-term predictability of stock returns: A quantile boosting approach," Finance Research Letters, Elsevier, vol. 22(C), pages 35-41.
    7. Kaihua Deng, 2015. "Predicting By Learning: An Adaptive Rationale," Annals of Financial Economics (AFE), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 10(02), pages 1-14, December.
    8. Zhu, Min, 2013. "Return distribution predictability and its implications for portfolio selection," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 27(C), pages 209-223.
    9. Reber, Beat, 2017. "Does mispricing, liquidity or third-party certification contribute to IPO downside risk?," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 25-53.
    10. Gebka, Bartosz & Wohar, Mark E., 2018. "The predictive power of the yield spread for future economic expansions: Evidence from a new approach," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 181-195.
    11. Duc Huynh, Toan Luu & Burggraf, Tobias & Wang, Mei, 2020. "Gold, platinum, and expected Bitcoin returns," Journal of Multinational Financial Management, Elsevier, vol. 56(C).
    12. Donald Lien & Zijun Wang, 2019. "Quantile information share," Journal of Futures Markets, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 39(1), pages 38-55, January.
    13. De Gooijer Jan G. & Zerom Dawit, 2020. "Penalized Averaging of Parametric and Non-Parametric Quantile Forecasts," Journal of Time Series Econometrics, De Gruyter, vol. 12(1), pages 1-15, January.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models
    • C31 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models; Quantile Regressions; Social Interaction Models
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G17 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Financial Forecasting and Simulation

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