Department of Economics
& Tornado Alley
Trends for Cumulative Sums of
Let U(t) for 0≤t≤N be a set of independent, normally-distributed random variables with means of zero and variances of σ&su2;. The distribution of
is also a normally distributed variable with a mean of zero but a variance of tσ². The growth rate r over an interval of t is
is also normal and of mean zero but with a variance of σ²/t.
Suppose the interval of size N is subdivided into m intervals of size n; i.e., nm=N. Let p be the probability that the growth rate over a subinterval is in the range r to r+Δr. Then the probability of the growth rate not being in that range is (1−p). The probability of none of the m subintervals not having a growth rate in that range is (1−p)m. Therefore the probability of at least one of the subintervals having a growth rate in that range is [1−(1−p)m]. Let the probability density funcion for this probability distribution be denoted as P(r).
Since the probability distribution of the growth rate over an interval of size m is a normal distribution of mean zero and variance σ²/n the probability that the growth rate is between r and r+Δr is
For an infinitesimal range in the growth rate the probability of at least one subinterval having a growth rate between r and r+dr, [1−(1−p)m], reduces to mp. Therefore
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