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Weighted-average least squares (WALS): Confidence and prediction intervals

Giuseppe De Luca (), Jan R. Magnus and Franco Peracchi ()
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Jan R. Magnus: Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and Tinbergen Institute

No 2108, EIEF Working Papers Series from Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF)

Abstract: We extend the results of De Luca et al. (2021) to inference for linear regression models based on weighted-average least squares (WALS), a frequentist model averaging approach with a Bayesian flavor. We concentrate on inference about a single focus parameter, interpreted as the causal effect of a policy or intervention, in the presence of a potentially large number of auxiliary parameters representing the nuisance component of the model. In our Monte Carlo simulations we compare the performance of WALS with that of several competing estimators, including the unrestricted least-squares estimator (with all auxiliary regressors) and the restricted least-squares estimator (with no auxiliary regressors), two post-selection estimators based on alternative model selection criteria (the Akaike and Bayesian information criteria), various versions of frequentist model averaging estimators (Mallows and jackknife), and one version of a popular shrinkage estimator (the adaptive LASSO). We discuss confidence intervals for the focus parameter and prediction intervals for the outcome of interest, and conclude that the WALS approach leads to superior confidence and prediction intervals, but only if we apply a bias correction.

Pages: 40 pages
Date: 2021, Revised 2021-05
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ecm and nep-ore
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