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Discussion Paper

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There is an emerging consensus in empirical finance that realized volatility series typically display long range dependence with a memory parameter (d) around 0.4 (Andersen et. al. (2001), Martens et. al. (2004)). The present paper provides some analytical explanations for this evidence and shows how recent results in Lieberman and Phillips (2004a, 2004b) can be used to refine statistical inference about d with little computational effort. In contrast to standard asymptotic normal theory now used in the literature which has an O ( n -1/2 ) error rate on error rejection probabilities, the asymptotic approximation used here has an error rate of o ( n -1/2 ). The new formula is independent of unknown parameters, is simple to calculate and highly user-friendly. The method is applied to test whether the reported long memory parameter estimates of Andersen et. al. (2001) and Martens et. al. (2004) differ significantly from the lower boundary ( d = 0.5) of nonstationary long memory.

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