Sunday, March 19, 2017

The Econometric Game, 2017

This year's edition of The Econometric Game is scheduled to take place next month in Amsterdam.

Specifically, between 5 and 7 April the University of Amsterdam will once again host visiting teams of econometrics students from around the world to compete to become "World Champions of Econometrics". It's a great initiative that's now in its eighth year.

This year, the competing teams come from:

Aarhus University
Corvinus University of Budapest
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Harvard University
KU Leuven
London School of Economics
Lund University
Maastricht University
McGill University
New Economic School
Oxford University
Stellenbosch University
Tilburg University
Toulouse School of Economics
Universidad Carlos III de Madrid
Universidad del Rosario
University College London
University of Amsterdam
University of Antwerp
University of Copenhagen
University of Economics, Prague
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
University of Lausanne
University of Rome Tor Vergata
University of São Paulo
University of Toronto
University of Warwick
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Warsaw School of Economics

The team from Harvard took first place in 2016. Let's see if they do it again this year!

© 2017, David E. Giles

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

March Reading List

Here are some suggestions for your reading this month:

  • Coble, D. & P. Picheira, 2017. Nowcasting building permits with Google trends. MPRA Paper No. 76514.
  • Mullahy, J., 2017. Marginal effects in multivariate probit models. Empirical Economics, 52, 447-461.
  • Pagan, A., 2017. Some consequences of using "measurement error shocks" when estimating time series models. CAMA Working Paper 12.2017, Cantre for Macroeconomic Analysis, Australian National University.
  • Reed, W. R. & A. Smith, 2017.A time series paradox: Unit root tests perform poorly when data are cointegrated. Economics Letters, 151, 71-74.
  • Zhang, L., 2017. Partial unit root and surplus-lag Granger causality testing: A Monte Carlo simulation study. Communications in Statistics - Theory and Methods, online.
© 2017, David E. Giles

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Econometrics - Young Researcher Award

The journal, Econometrics, hasn't been around all that long, but it has published some great articles by some very prominent econometricians. And it's "open access" to readers, which is always good news.

Today, I received an email with the following important information:

"The journal Econometrics ( is inviting applications and nominations for the 2017 Young Researcher Award. The aim of the award is to encourage and motivate young
researchers in the field of econometrics.
Applications and nominations will be assessed by an evaluation committee chaired by the Editors and composed of Editorial Board Members.
Eligibility Criteria:
a) The upper age limit for the applicant is 40.
b) No more than 10 years since conferral of a PhD degree (by 30 June 2017).
The award will consist of: (1) a certificate; (2) an honorarium of 500 CHF; (3) a voucher for publishing two papers free of charge and without fixed deadlines in Econometrics if the Article Processing Charge will be applied; and (4) a £150 book voucher for PM book series sponsored by Palgrave Macmillan.
The application and nomination pack should include:
1. A Curriculum Vitae, including a complete list of publications and conference activities.
2. A description of the applicant’s major research contributions over the last 5 years, including clear discussions of 3 most representative publications published over the last 5 years. (For each publication, please provide significance of the publication and the applicant’s own contribution to the publication).
3. A letter of nomination from an established econometrician. The letter should highlight the candidate’s achievements and contribution to the field of econometrics.
Please send your application/nomination to the Econometrics Editorial Office at by 30 June 2017. The winner will be announced on the Econometrics website in September 2017."

© 2017, David E. Giles

Friday, February 3, 2017

February Reading

Here are some suggestions for your reading list this month:
  • Aastveit, A., C. Foroni, and F. Ravazzolo, 2016. Density forecasts with midas models. Journal of Applied Econometrics, online.
  • Chang, C-L. and M. McAleer, 2016.  The fiction of full BEKK. Tinbergen Institute Discussion Paper TI 2017-015/III.
  • Chudik, A., G. Kapetanios, and M.H. Pesaran, 2016.  A one-covariate at a time, multiple testing approach to variable selection in high-dimensional linear regression models. Cambridge Working Paper Economics: 1667.
  • Kleiber, C.. Structural change in (economic) time series WWZ Working Paper 2016/06, University of Basel.
  • Romano, J. P. and M. Wolf, 2017. Resurrecting weighted least squares. Journal of Econometrics, 197, 1-19.
  • Yamada, H., 2017. Several least squares problems related to the Hodrick-Prescott filtering. Communications in Statistics - Theory and Methods, online.

© 2016, David E. Giles

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Hypothesis Testing Using (Non-) Overlapping Confidence Intervals

Here's something (else!) that annoys the heck out of me. I've seen it come up time and again in economics seminars over the years.

It usually goes something like this:

There are two estimates of some parameter, based on two different models.

Question from Audience: "I know that the two point estimates are numerically pretty similar, but is the difference statistically significant?"

Speaker's Response: "Well, if you look at the two standard errors and mentally compute separate 95% confidence intervals, these intervals overlap, so there's no significant difference, at least at the 5% level."

My Reaction: "What utter crap!  (Eye roll!)

So, what's going on here?

Friday, January 27, 2017

In Honour of Peter Schmidt

The latest issue of Econometric Reviews (Vol 36, Nos. 1-3) is devoted to papers that have been assembled to honour Peter Schmidt, of Michigan State University. Peter's contributions to econometrics have been outstanding, and it's great to see his work celebrated in this way.

In the abstract to their introduction to this collection Essie Maasoumi and Robin Sickles comment as follows:
"Peter Schmidt has been one of its best-known and most respected econometricians in the profession for four decades. He has brought his talents to many scholarly outlets and societies, and has played a foundational and constructive role in the development of the field of econometrics. Peter Schmidt has also served and led the development of Econometric Reviews since its inception in 1982. His judgment has always been fair, informed, clear, decisive, and constructive. Respect for ideas and scholarship of others, young and old, is second nature to him. This is the best of traits, and Peter serves as an uncommon example to us all. The seventeen articles that make up this Econometric Reviews Special Issue in Honor of Peter Schmidt represent the work of fifty of the very best econometricians in our profession. They honor Professor Schmidt’s lifelong accomplishments by providing fundamental research work that reflects many of the broad research themes that have distinguished his long and productive career. These include time series econometrics, panel data econometrics, and stochastic frontier production analysis."
I hope that you get a chance to read the papers in this issue of Econometric Reviews.

© 2017, David E. Giles

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Quantitative Macroeconomic Modeling with Structural Vector Autoregressions

A terrific new book titled, Quantitative Macroeconomic Modeling with Structural Vector Autoregressions – An EViews Implementation, is now available for free downloading from the EViews site. The book is written by Sam Ouliaris, Adrian Pagan, and Jorge Restrepo.

The "blurb" about this important new book reads:
"Quantitative macroeconomic research is conducted in a number of ways. An important method has been the use of the technique known as Structural Vector Autoregressions (SVARs), which aims to gather information about dynamic processes in macroeconomic systems. This book sets out the theory underlying the SVAR methodology in a relatively simple way and discusses many of the problems that can arise when using the technique. It also proposes solutions that are relatively easy to implement using EViews 9.5. Its orientation is towards applied work and it does this by working with the data sets from some classic SVAR studies."
In my view, EViews is certainly the natural choice for this venture. As the authors note in their Preface:
"A choice had to be made about the computer package that would be used to perform the quantitative work and EViews was eventually selected because of its popularity amongst IMF staff and central bankers more generally."
Gareth Thomas (of EViews) has pointed out to me that: "much of the book is covered in the IMF's free online macroeconomic forecasting course.  The next iteration of which starts in February: "

I'm sure that this new resource will be very well received!

© 2017, David E. Giles

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Royal Economic Society Webcasts on Econometrics

The Royal Economic Society has recently released videos of interviews with three leading econometricans, recorded during the Society's 2016 Meeting. These are: 

Webcasts of Special (Econometrics) Sessions at RES Meetings between 2011 and 2016 are also available for viewing - here.     
© 2017, David E. Giles

Friday, January 13, 2017

Vintage Years in Econometrics - The 1970's

Continuing on from my earlier posts about vintage years for econometrics in the 1930's, 1940's, 1950's, 1960's, here's my tasting guide for the 1970's.

Once again, let me note that "in econometrics, what constitutes quality and importance is partly a matter of taste - just like wine! So, not all of you will agree with the choices I've made in the following compilation."

Monday, January 9, 2017

Trading Models and Distributed Lags

Yesterday, I received an email from Robert Hillman.

Robert wrote:
"I’ve thoroughly enjoyed your recent posts and associated links on distributed lags. I’d like to throw in a slightly different perspective.
 To give you some brief background on myself: I did a PhD in econometrics 1993-1998 at Southampton University. ............ I now manage capital and am heavily influenced by my study of econometrics and in particular exploring the historical foundations of many things that today that look new and funky but are probably old but no less funky!
I wanted to draw attention to the fact that many finance practitioners have long used ‘models’ that in my view are robust and heuristic versions of nonlinear ADL models. I’m not sure this interpretation is as widely recognised as it could be."
With Robert's permission, you can access the full contents of what Robert had to say, here

Robert provides some interesting and useful insights into the connections between certain trading models and ARDL models, and I thought that these would be useful to readers of this blog.

Thanks, Robert!

© 2017, David E. Giles