Political regimes, business cycles, seasonalities, and returns

John G. Powell, Jing Shi, Tom Smith, Robert E. Whaley*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


This paper provides a method for testing for regime differences when regimes are long-lasting. Standard testing procedures are generally inappropriate because regime persistence causes a spurious regression problem - a problem that has led to incorrect inference in a broad range of studies involving regimes representing political, business, and seasonal cycles. The paper outlines analytically how standard estimators can be adjusted for regime dummy variable persistence. While the adjustments are helpful asymptotically, spurious regression remains a problem in small samples and must be addressed using simulation or bootstrap procedures. We provide a simulation procedure for testing hypotheses in situations where an independent variable in a time-series regression is a persistent regime dummy variable. We also develop a procedure for testing hypotheses in situations where the dependent variable has similar properties.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1112-1128
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Banking and Finance
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • persistent regimes
  • regime difference tests
  • spurious regression
  • dummy variable


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