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Information-theoretic asymptotics of Bayes methods

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2 Author(s)
B. S. Clarke ; Dept. of Stat., Illinois Univ., Urbana-Champaign, IL, USA ; A. R. Barron

In the absence of knowledge of the true density function, Bayesian models take the joint density function for a sequence of n random variables to be an average of densities with respect to a prior. The authors examine the relative entropy distance Dn between the true density and the Bayesian density and show that the asymptotic distance is (d/2)(log n)+c, where d is the dimension of the parameter vector. Therefore, the relative entropy rate Dn/n converges to zero at rate (log n)/n. The constant c, which the authors explicitly identify, depends only on the prior density function and the Fisher information matrix evaluated at the true parameter value. Consequences are given for density estimation, universal data compression, composite hypothesis testing, and stock-market portfolio selection

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Information Theory  (Volume:36 ,  Issue: 3 )