Asymptotics and fluctuations of largest eigenvalues of empirical covariance matrices associated with long memory stationary processes

Abstract : Large covariance matrices play a fundamental role in the multivariate analysis and high-dimensional statistics. Since the pioneer’s works of Marcenko and Pastur (1967), the asymptotic behavior of the spectral measure of such matrices associated with N independent copies of n observations of a sequence of iid random variables is known: almost surely, it converges in distribution to a deterministic law when N and n tend to infinity at the same rate. More recently, Merlevède and Peligrad (2016) have proved that in the case of large covariance matrices associated with independent copies of observations of a strictly stationary centered process which is square integrable and satisfies some weak regularity assumptions, almost surely, the empirical spectral distribution converges weakly to a nonrandom distribution depending only on the spectral density of the underlying process. In particular, if the spectral density is continuous and bounded (which is the case for linear processes with absolutely summable coefficients), the limiting spectral distribution has a compact support. However, if the underlying stationary process exhibits long memory, the support of the limiting distribution is not compact anymore and studying the limiting behavior of the eigenvalues and eigenvectors of the associated large covariance matrices can give more information on the underlying process. This thesis is in this direction and aims at studying the asymptotics and the fluctuations of the largest eigenvalues of large covariance matrices associated with stationary processes exhibiting long memory. In the case where the underlying stationary process is Gaussian, the study can be simplified by a linear model whose underlying population covariance matrix is a Hermitian Toeplitz matrix. In the case of stationary Gaussian processes exhibiting long memory, we then show that the fluctuations of the largest eigenvalues suitably renormalized are Gaussian. This limiting behavior shows a difference compared to the one when large covariance matrices associated with short memory processes are considered. Indeed in this last case, the fluctuations of the largest eigenvalues suitably renormalized follow asymptotically the Tracy-Widom law. To prove our results on Gaussian fluctuations, additionally to usual techniques developed in random matrices analysis, a deep study of the eigenvalues and eigenvectors behavior of the underlying Toeplitz matrix is necessary. In particular, we show that in the case of long memory, the largest eigenvalues of the Toeplitz matrix converge to infinity and satisfy a property of “multiple spectral gaps”. Moreover, we prove a delocalization property of their associated eigenvectors. In this thesis, we are also interested in the universality of our results in the case of the simplified model and also in the case of large covariance matrices when the Toeplitz matrices are replaced by bloc diagonal matrices
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Peng Tian. Asymptotics and fluctuations of largest eigenvalues of empirical covariance matrices associated with long memory stationary processes. General Mathematics [math.GM]. Université Paris-Est, 2018. English. ⟨NNT : 2018PESC1131⟩. ⟨tel-02085884⟩

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