Bayesian Analysis of a Threshold Stochastic Volatility Model
Posted: 31 Mar 2013
Date Written: March 28, 2013
This paper proposes a parsimonious threshold stochastic volatility (SV) model for financial asset returns. Instead of imposing a threshold value on the dynamics of the latent volatility process of the SV model, we assume that the innovation of the mean equation follows a threshold distribution in which the mean innovation switches between two regimes. In our model, the threshold is treated as an unknown parameter. We show that the proposed threshold SV model not only can capture the time-varying volatility of returns, but also can accommodate the asymmetric shape of conditional distribution of the returns. Parameter estimation is carried out by using Markov Chain Monte Carlo methods. For model selection and volatility forecast, an auxiliary particle filter technique is employed to approximate the filter and prediction distributions of the returns. Several experiments are conducted to assess the robustness of the proposed model and estimation methods. In the empirical study, we apply our threshold SV model to three return time series. The empirical analysis results show that the threshold parameter has a nonzero value and the mean innovations belong to two separately distinct regimes. We also find that the model with an unknown threshold parameter value consistently outperforms the model with a known threshold parameter value.
Keywords: Threshold Stochastic Volatility, Bayesian Inference, MCMC, Deviance Information Criteria
JEL Classification: C1, C11, C15, G1
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