Statistical dependence: Beyond Pearson's ρ

by   Dag Tjøstheim, et al.

Pearson's ρ is the most used measure of statistical dependence. It gives a complete characterization of dependence in the Gaussian case, and it also works well in some non-Gaussian situations. It is well known, however, that it has a number of shortcomings; in particular for heavy tailed distributions and in nonlinear situations, where it may produce misleading, and even disastrous results. In recent years a number of alternatives have been proposed. In this paper, we will survey these developments, especially results obtained in the last couple of decades. Among measures discussed are the copula, distribution-based measures, the distance covariance, the HSIC measure popular in machine learning, and finally the local Gaussian correlation, which is a local version of Pearson's ρ. Throughout we put the emphasis on conceptual developments and a comparison of these. We point out relevant references to technical details as well as comparative empirical and simulated experiments. There is a broad selection of references under each topic treated.


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