Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to estimate volatility in African stock markets (ASMs), taking account of periodic level shifts in the mean level of volatility, where the regime shifts are determined endogenously. Design/methodology/approach – Volatility estimates are incorporated into standard volatility models to assess the impact of structural breaks on volatility persistence, long memory and forecasting performance for ASMs. Findings – The results presented here indeed suggest that persistence and long memory in volatility are overestimated when regime shifts are not accounted for. In particular, application of breakpoint tests and a moving average procedure suggest that unconditional volatility displays substantial time variation. Practical implications – A modification of the standard generalised autoregressive conditional heteroscedasticity model to allow for time variation in the unconditional variance generates improved volatility forecasting performance for some African markets. Originality/value – This paper describes one of the first studies to incorporate endogenously determined regime shifts into volatility estimates and assess the impact of structural breaks on volatility persistence, long memory and forecasting performance for ASMs.
Managerial Finance – Emerald Publishing
Published: Feb 22, 2011
Keywords: Africa; Stock markets; Volatility; Variance
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