Handy Formulas for Binomial Moments

12/11/2020 ∙ by Maciej Skorski, et al. ∙ 0

Despite the relevance of the binomial distribution for probability theory and applied statistical inference, its higher-order moments are poorly understood. The existing formulas are either not general enough, or not structured or simplified enough for intended applications. This paper introduces novel formulas for binomial moments, in terms of variance rather than success probability. The obtained formulas are arguably better structured and simpler compared to prior works. In addition, the paper presents algorithms to derive these formulas along with working implementation in the Python symbolic algebra package. The novel approach is a combinatorial argument coupled with clever algebraic simplifications which rely on symmetrization theory. As an interesting byproduct we establish asymptotically sharp estimates for central binomial moments, improving upon partial results from prior works.

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