A Cross-Entropy approach to the estimation of Generalised Linear Multilevel Models
Giuseppe Espa (),
Diego Giuliani () and
Flavio Santi ()
No 2015/04, DEM Working Papers from Department of Economics and Management
In this paper we use the cross-entropy method for noisy optimisation for fitting generalised linear multilevel models through maximum likelihood. We propose specifications of the instrumental distributions for positive and bounded parameters that improve the computational performance. We also introduce a new stopping criterion, which has the advantage of being problem-independent. In a second step we find, by means of extensive Monte Carlo experiments, the most suitable values of the input parameters of the algorithm. Finally, we compare the method to benchmark estimation technique based on numerical integration. The cross-entropy approach turns out to be preferable from both the statistical and the computational point of view. In the last part of the paper, the method is used to model death probability of firms in the healthcare industry in Italy.
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