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Keywords:

  • asymptotic equivalence;
  • covariation;
  • integrated covolatility;
  • microstructure noise;
  • spectral adaptive estimation

ABSTRACT

We propose localized spectral estimators for the quadratic covariation and the spot covolatility of diffusion processes, which are observed discretely with additive observation noise. The appropriate estimation for time-varying volatilities is based on an asymptotic equivalence of the underlying statistical model to a white-noise model with correlation and volatility processes being constant over small time intervals. The asymptotic equivalence of the continuous-time and discrete-time experiments is proved by a construction with linear interpolation in one direction and local means for the other. The new estimator outperforms earlier non-parametric methods in the literature for the considered model. We investigate its finite sample size characteristics in simulations and draw a comparison between various proposed methods.