CFDP 1824

Maximum Likelihood Estimation and Uniform Inference with Sporadic Identification Failure


Publication Date: October 2011

Pages: 71


This paper analyzes the properties of a class of estimators, tests, and confidence sets (CS’s) when the parameters are not identified in parts of the parameter space. Specifically, we consider estimator criterion functions that are sample averages and are smooth functions of a parameter theta. This includes log likelihood, quasi-log likelihood, and least squares criterion functions.

We determine the asymptotic distributions of estimators under lack of identification and under weak, semi-strong, and strong identification. We determine the asymptotic size (in a uniform sense) of standard t and quasi-likelihood ratio (QLR) tests and CS’s. We provide methods of constructing QLR tests and CS’s that are robust to the strength of identification.

The results are applied to two examples: a nonlinear binary choice model and the smooth transition threshold autoregressive (STAR) model.

Supplemental material

Supplement pages: 34


Asymptotic size, Binary choice, Confidence set, Estimator, Identification, Likelihood, Nonlinear models, Test, Smooth transition threshold autoregression, Weak identification

JEL Classification Codes:  C12, C15