New Economics Papers
on Computational Economics
Issue of 2013‒11‒14
three papers chosen by

  1. Finding starting-values for maximum likelihood estimation of vector STAR models By Schleer, Frauke
  2. A Multi-attribute Yardstick Auction without Prior Scoring By Jens Leth Hougaard; Kurt Nielsen; Athanasios Papakonstantinou
  3. Would it have paid to be in the eurozone? By Michal Brzoza-Brzezina; Krzysztof Makarski; Grzegorz Wesolowski

  1. By: Schleer, Frauke
    Abstract: This paper focuses on finding starting-values for maximum likelihood estimation of Vector STAR models. Based on a Monte Carlo exercise, different procedures are evaluated. Their performance is assessed w.r.t. model fit and computational effort. I employ i) grid search algorithms, and ii) heuristic optimization procedures, namely, differential evolution, threshold accepting, and simulated annealing. In the equation-by-equation starting-value search approach the procedures achieve equally good results. Unless the errors are cross-correlated, equation-by-equation search followed by a derivative-based algorithm can handle such an optimization problem sufficiently well. This result holds also for higher-dimensional VSTAR models with a slight edge for the heuristic methods. Being faced with more complex Vector STAR models for which a multivariate search approach is required, simulated annealing and differential evolution outperform threshold accepting and the grid with a zoom. --
    Keywords: Vector STAR model,starting-values,optimization heuristics,grid search,estimation,non-linearieties
    JEL: C32 C61 C63
    Date: 2013
  2. By: Jens Leth Hougaard (Department of Food and Resource Economics, University of Copenhagen); Kurt Nielsen (Department of Food and Resource Economics, University of Copenhagen); Athanasios Papakonstantinou (Department of Food and Resource Economics, University of Copenhagen)
    Abstract: We analyze a simple multi-attribute procurement auction that uses yardstick competition to settle prices. Upon receiving the submitted bids, a mediator computes the yardstick prices (bids) by a linear weighting of the other participants’ bids. The auction simplifies the procurement process by reducing the principal’s articulation of his preferences to simply choosing the most preferred offer as if it was a market with posted prices. Although truthful reporting does not constitute a Nash equilibrium, we demonstrate by simulations that truth-telling may indeed be some kind of focal point. By focusing on the initial winner in case everyone tells the truth, we show that even if the other bidders are allowed to misreport by as much as 20% of their true cost, the initial winner remains the winner in 80% of all simulated auctions in the case of 3 competing bidders. Furthermore, as it takes aggressive bidding to become the new winner of the auction, we show that the new winners typically win with a loss. Combining the two results we have that, almost independently of the number of competing bidders and the degree of misreporting, approximately 90% of all simulations will either have the same initial winner or a new winner who wins the auction with a loss in its utility.
    Keywords: Multi-attribute auction, yardstick competition, articulation of preferences, simulation
    Date: 2013–05
  3. By: Michal Brzoza-Brzezina (National Bank of Poland, Warsaw School of Economics); Krzysztof Makarski (National Bank of Poland, Warsaw School of Economics); Grzegorz Wesolowski (National Bank of Poland, Warsaw School of Economics)
    Abstract: Giving up an independent monetary policy and a flexible exchange rate are the key sources of costs and benefits entailed to joining a monetary union. In this paper we analyze their ex post impact on the stability of the Polish economy during the recent financial crisis. To this end we construct a small open economy DSGE model and estimate it for Poland and the euro area. Then we run a counterfactual simulation, assuming Poland's euro area accession in 1q2007. The results are striking - volatilities of GDP and inflation increase substantially. In particular, had Poland adopted the euro, GDP growth would have oscillated between -6% and +9% (-9% to +11% under more extreme assumptions) instead of between 1% and 7%. We conclude that during the analyzed period independent monetary policy and, in particular, the flexible exchange rate played an important stabilizing role for the Polish economy.
    Keywords: optimum currency area, euro-area accession, emerging market
    JEL: E32 E58 E65
    Date: 2013–10–23

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