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Efficient Rare-event Simulation for Perpetuities

By Jose Blanchet, Henry Lam and Bert Zwart


We consider perpetuities of the form D = B_1 exp(Y_1) + B_2 exp(Y_1+Y_2) + ... where the Y_j's and B_j's might be i.i.d. or jointly driven by a suitable Markov chain. We assume that the Y_j's satisfy the so-called Cramer condition with associated root theta_{ast} in (0,infty) and that the tails of the B_j's are appropriately behaved so that D is regularly varying with index theta_{ast}. We illustrate by means of an example that the natural state-independent importance sampling estimator obtained by exponentially tilting the Y_j's according to theta_{ast} fails to provide an efficient estimator (in the sense of appropriately controlling the relative mean squared error as the tail probability of interest gets smaller). Then, we construct estimators based on state-dependent importance sampling that are rigorously shown to be efficient

Topics: Mathematics - Probability
Year: 2012
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