Most methods for analyzing functional time series rely on the estimation of lagged autocovariance operators or surfaces. As in univariate time series analysis, testing whether or not such operators are zero is an important diagnostic step that is well understood when the data, or model residuals, form a strong white noise. When functional data are constructed from dense records of, for example, asset prices or returns, a weak white noise model allowing for conditional heteroscedasticity is often more realistic. Applying inferential procedures for the autocovariance based on a strong white noise to such data often leads to the erroneous conclusion that the data exhibit significant autocorrelation. We develop methods for performing inference for the lagged autocovariance operators of stationary functional time series that are valid under general conditional heteroscedasticity conditions. These include a portmanteau test to assess the cumulative significance of empirical autocovariance operators up to a user selected maximum lag, as well as methods for obtaining confidence bands for a functional version of the autocorrelation that are useful in model selection/validation. We analyze the efficacy of these methods through a simulation study, and apply them to functional time series derived from asset price data of several representative assets. In this application, we found that strong white noise tests often suggest that such series exhibit significant autocorrelation, whereas our tests, which account for functional conditional heteroscedasticity, show that these data are in fact uncorrelated in a function space.
- Conditional heteroskedasticity
- Functional data