Adjusting for Autocorrelated Errors in Neural Networks for Time Series Regression and Forecasting

01/28/2021
by   Fan-Keng Sun, et al.
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In many cases, it is difficult to generate highly accurate models for time series data using a known parametric model structure. In response, an increasing body of research focuses on using neural networks to model time series approximately. A common assumption in training neural networks on time series is that the errors at different time steps are uncorrelated. However, due to the temporality of the data, errors are actually autocorrelated in many cases, which makes such maximum likelihood estimation inaccurate. In this paper, we propose to learn the autocorrelation coefficient jointly with the model parameters in order to adjust for autocorrelated errors. For time series regression, large-scale experiments indicate that our method outperforms the Prais-Winsten method, especially when the autocorrelation is strong. Furthermore, we broaden our method to time series forecasting and apply it with various state-of-the-art models. Results across a wide range of real-world datasets show that our method enhances performance in almost all cases.

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