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We consider a flexible smooth transition autoregressive (STAR) model with multiple regimes and multiple transition variables. This formulation can be interpreted as a time varying linear model where the coefficients are the outputs of a single hidden layer feedforward neural network. This proposal has the major advantage of nesting several nonlinear models, such as, the self-exciting threshold autoregressive (SETAR), the autoregressive neural network (AR-NN), and the logistic STAR models. Furthermore, if the neural network is interpreted as a nonparametric universal approximation to any Borel measurable function, our formulation is directly comparable to the functional coefficient autoregressive (FAR) and the single-index coefficient regression models. A model building procedure is developed based on statistical inference arguments. A Monte Carlo experiment showed that the procedure works in small samples, and its performance improves, as it should, in medium size samples. Several real examples are also addressed.
Date of Publication: Jan. 2005