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In-sample tests of predictive ability: a new approach

  • Todd E. Clark
  • Michael W. McCracken

This paper presents analytical, Monte Carlo, and empirical evidence linking in-sample tests of predictive content and out-of-sample forecast accuracy. Our approach focuses on the negative effect that finite-sample estimation error has on forecast accuracy despite the presence of significant population-level predictive content. Specifically, we derive simple-to-use in-sample tests that test not only whether a particular variable has predictive content but also whether this content is estimated precisely enough to improve forecast accuracy. Our tests are asymptotically non-central chi-square or non-central normal. We provide a convenient bootstrap method for computing the relevant critical values. In the Monte Carlo and empirical analysis, we compare the effectiveness of our testing procedure with more common testing procedures.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis in its series Working Papers with number 2009-051.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedlwp:2009-051
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  1. Campbell, John & Thompson, Samuel P., 2008. "Predicting Excess Stock Returns Out of Sample: Can Anything Beat the Historical Average?," Scholarly Articles 2622619, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  2. Torous, Walter & Valkanov, Rossen, 2000. "Boundaries of Predictability: Noisy Predictive Regressions," University of California at Los Angeles, Anderson Graduate School of Management qt33p7672z, Anderson Graduate School of Management, UCLA.
  3. Silvia Goncalves & Lutz Kilian, 2007. "Asymptotic and Bootstrap Inference for AR(∞) Processes with Conditional Heteroskedasticity," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 26(6), pages 609-641.
  4. Inoue, Atsushi & Kilian, Lutz, 2006. "On the selection of forecasting models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 130(2), pages 273-306, February.
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  6. de Jong, Robert M., 1997. "Central Limit Theorems for Dependent Heterogeneous Random Variables," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 13(03), pages 353-367, June.
  7. Rapach, David E. & Wohar, Mark E., 2006. "In-sample vs. out-of-sample tests of stock return predictability in the context of data mining," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 231-247, March.
  8. Pesaran, M Hashem & Timmermann, Allan, 1995. " Predictability of Stock Returns: Robustness and Economic Significance," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(4), pages 1201-28, September.
  9. Ivo Welch & Amit Goyal, 2008. "A Comprehensive Look at The Empirical Performance of Equity Premium Prediction," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 21(4), pages 1455-1508, July.
  10. Hansen, Bruce E, 1996. "Erratum: The Likelihood Ratio Test under Nonstandard Conditions: Testing the Markov Switching Model of GNP," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(2), pages 195-98, March-Apr.
  11. White, Halbert, 1980. "A Heteroskedasticity-Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimator and a Direct Test for Heteroskedasticity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 817-38, May.
  12. Clark, Todd E. & McCracken, Michael W., 2005. "The power of tests of predictive ability in the presence of structural breaks," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 124(1), pages 1-31, January.
  13. Halbert White, 2000. "A Reality Check for Data Snooping," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(5), pages 1097-1126, September.
  14. Nelson, Charles R & Kim, Myung J, 1993. " Predictable Stock Returns: The Role of Small Sample Bias," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 48(2), pages 641-61, June.
  15. Lutz Kilian & Atsushi Inoue, 2004. "Bagging Time Series Models," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 110, Econometric Society.
  16. Kilian, Lutz, 1999. "Exchange Rates and Monetary Fundamentals: What Do We Learn from Long-Horizon Regressions?," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(5), pages 491-510, Sept.-Oct.
  17. Hodrick, Robert J, 1992. "Dividend Yields and Expected Stock Returns: Alternative Procedures for Inference and Measurement," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 5(3), pages 357-86.
  18. Kirby, Chris, 1997. "Measuring the Predictable Variation in Stock and Bond Returns," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 10(3), pages 579-630.
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