This paper proposes a contemporaneous-threshold multivariate smooth transition autoregressive (C-MSTAR) model in which the regime weights depend on the ex-ante probabilities that latent regime-specific variables exceed certain threshold values. A key feature of the model is that the transition function depends on all the parameters of the model as well as on the data. Since the mixing weights are also a function of the regime-specific noise covariance matrix, the model can account for contemporaneous regime-specific co-movements of the variables. The stability and distributional properties of the proposed model are discussed, as well as issues of estimation, testing and forecasting. The practical usefulness of the C-MSTAR model is illustrated by examining the relationship between US stock prices and interest rates
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