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March 2007 - Volume 75 Issue 2 Page 459 - 502


p.459


Estimating and Testing Structural Changes in Multivariate Regressions

Zhongjun Qu
Pierre Perron

Abstract

This paper considers issues related to estimation, inference, and computation with multiple structural changes that occur at unknown dates in a system of equations. Changes can occur in the regression coefficients and/or the covariance matrix of the errors. We also allow arbitrary restrictions on these parameters, which permits the analysis of partial structural change models, common breaks that occur in all equations, breaks that occur in a subset of equations, and so forth. The method of estimation is quasi-maximum likelihood based on Normal errors. The limiting distributions are obtained under more general assumptions than previous studies. For testing, we propose likelihood ratio type statistics to test the null hypothesis of no structural change and to select the number of changes. Structural change tests with restrictions on the parameters can be constructed to achieve higher power when prior information is present. For computation, an algorithm for an efficient procedure is proposed to construct the estimates and test statistics. We also introduce a novel locally ordered breaks model, which allows the breaks in different equations to be related yet not occurring at the same dates.

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