Backtesting Parametric Value-at-Risk With Estimation Risk

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Executive Summary

One of the implications of the creation of Basel Committee on Banking Supervision was the implementation of Value-at-Risk (VaR) as the standard tool for measuring market risk. Since then, the capital requirements of commercial banks with trading activities are based on VaR estimates. Therefore, appropriately constructed tests for assessing the out-of-sample forecast accuracy of the VaR model (backtesting procedures) have become of crucial practical importance. In this paper the authors show that the use of the standard unconditional and independence backtesting procedures to assess VaR models in out-of-sample composite environments can be misleading. These tests do not consider the impact of estimation risk and therefore may use wrong critical values to assess market risk.

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