Financial dependence analysis: applications of vine copulas

Document Type

Journal Article




Faculty of Business and Law


School of Business/Marketing and Services Research Centre




This article was originally published as: Allen, D. E., Ashraf, M., McAleer, M., Powell, R. , & Singh, A. (2013). Financial dependence analysis: applications of vine copulas. Statistica Neerlandica, 67(4), 403-435. Original article available here


This paper features the application of a novel and recently developed method of statistical and mathematical analysis to the assessment of financial risk, namely regular vine copulas. Dependence modelling using copulas is a popular tool in financial applications but is usually applied to pairs of securities. Vine copulas offer greater flexibility and permit the modelling of complex dependence patterns using the rich variety of bivariate copulas that can be arranged and analysed in a tree structure to facilitate the analysis of multiple dependencies. We apply regular vine copula analysis to a sample of stocks comprising the Dow Jones index to assess their interdependencies and to assess how their correlations change in different economic circumstances using three different sample periods around Global Financial Crisis (GFC).: pre-GFC (January 2005 to July 2007), GFC (July 2007 to September 2009) and post-GFC periods (September 2009 to December 2011). The empirical results suggest that the dependencies change in a complex manner, and there is evidence of greater reliance on the Student-t copula in the copula choice within the tree structures for the GFC period, which is consistent with the existence of larger tails in the distributions of returns for this period. One of the attractions of this approach to risk modelling is the flexibility in the choice of distributions used to model co-dependencies. The practical application of regular vine metrics is demonstrated via an example of the calculation of the Value at Risk of a portfolio of stocks.