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Can someone explain how to apply an Hidden markov model on a stock dataset which has many rows and columns. I am new to HMM but have been going through it for a week.

Here is a snapshot of dataset:

quarter stock   date    open    high    low close   volume
1   AA  1/7/2011    $15.82	$16.72 $15.78	$16.42 239655616
1   AA  1/14/2011   $16.71	$16.71 $15.64	$15.97 242963398
1   AA  1/21/2011   $16.19	$16.38 $15.60	$15.79 138428495
1   AA  1/28/2011   $15.87	$16.63 $15.82	$16.13 151379173
1   AA  2/4/2011    $16.18	$17.39 $16.18	$17.14 154387761
1   AA  2/11/2011   $17.33	$17.48 $16.97	$17.37 114691279
1   AA  2/18/2011   $17.39	$17.68 $17.28	$17.28 80023895
1   AA  2/25/2011   $16.98	$17.15 $15.96	$16.68 132981863
1   AA  3/4/2011    $16.81	$16.94 $16.13	$16.58 109493077
1   AA  3/11/2011   $16.58	$16.75 $15.42	$16.03 114332562
1   AA  3/18/2011   $15.95	$16.33 $15.43	$16.11 130374108
1   AA  3/25/2011   $16.38	$17.24 $16.26	$17.09 95550392
1   AXP 1/7/2011    $43.30	$45.60 $43.11	$44.36 45102042
1   AXP 1/14/2011   $44.20	$46.25 $44.01	$46.25 25913713
1   AXP 1/21/2011   $46.03	$46.71 $44.71	$46.00 38824728
1   AXP 1/28/2011   $46.05	$46.27 $43.42	$43.86 51427274
1   AXP 2/4/2011    $44.13	$44.23 $43.15	$43.82 39501680
1   AXP 2/11/2011   $43.96	$46.79 $43.88	$46.75 43746998
1   AXP 2/18/2011   $46.42	$46.93 $45.53	$45.53 28564910
1   AXP 2/25/2011   $44.94	$45.12 $43.01	$43.53 39654146

I particularly mean what are the hidden states here? What are the observed states and what are the transition, individual and emission probabilities associated with the data. I have seen many papers saying about the stock data but nothing very clearly. In most of the HMM examples the dataset is not shown but they explain about the steps to be taken.

Can someone explain how to use this dataset or some other one (but please show the dataset also) for HMM. A step by step demo will be of great help. In particular I want to see how the dataset is used rather than explaining about the forward, Viterbi and Baum-Welch algorithms and no explanation on weather=(sunny, rainy, windy) scenario.

For any help advance thanx.

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    $\begingroup$ "how to apply Hidden markov model on a stock dataset" - The first thing you need to define is what is the goal you want to reach through using an HMM. This will define which data to use for what within the HMM framework. $\endgroup$ – Eskapp Aug 28 '17 at 15:25
  • $\begingroup$ @Eskapp My goal is to predict profit or loss for the future stock using the above dataset. I am thinking to use the "high" attribute alone for prediction. Can u now explain how it is to be done.. $\endgroup$ – Devi Sep 6 '17 at 6:29
  • $\begingroup$ I think, what you need is to understand HMMs. Therefore, I recommend you read this document: robots.ox.ac.uk/~vgg/rg/papers/hmm.pdf . It is - imho - THE best tutorial for HMMs. $\endgroup$ – toom Dec 16 '18 at 3:37
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There is no one way to apply a HMM to stock market data. There are many options, and you might find that some ways are more useful than others.

In my opinion, the primary restriction you should concern yourself with is what the state process should represent. Your only constraint for this decision is that the state process must evolve on a discrete state space (e.g. $\{1,2,3,4\}$). In a economic/financial context, the values of this state space are often called "regimes."

One example: your state $x_t \in \{0,1\}$. If $x_t = 0$, then the mean return is positive. Otherwise, the mean return is negative. This suggests that your state variable could have the interpretation of whether or not you're in a "bull" or "bear" market. There's a paper from the 1990's by Hamilton that people cite quite often that implements this idea (I think). I am not sure, though, because I have never read it.

Another example: assume your state $x_t \in \{0,1\}$ again, and if $x_t = 0$, then some measure of dispersion for the return distribution is low, and otherwise it's high. Then your state would have the interpretation of whether you're in a low volatility or high volatility regime. This would be a competitor to other stochastic volatility models (most of the time their state processes evolve on a continuous state space, like $\mathbb{R}$, though).

Two more things. I have never seen the observations called "states." You want to reserve that word for the hidden/latent portions, probably. These observations will most likely be some of returns, although there is no reason that that is necessary. Second, these are not an exhaustive list of suggestions. Try fitting different models, and see if they are useful.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thank u for the response. Could you give a demo of applying HMM on any real dataset ?? What sort of dataset should I choose for hmm. A sample provided will be good. What should I do with the multiple features contained in the data when using hmm. I am particularly interested in hmm and so if someone could show me the dataset and the corresponding hmm model/chain then that can fix my confusion. NO sunny, windy, rainy dataset pls. $\endgroup$ – Devi Aug 29 '17 at 5:08
  • $\begingroup$ More correctly how should a data set for hmm look like. $\endgroup$ – Devi Aug 29 '17 at 5:27
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Taylor answer is accurate. I do not see HMM as suited to the data set you propose as is however. It seems to me that the number of samples in the time series is too little...

To answer your question about illustrating how HMMs work without equations:

A HMM is based on a Markov Chain of states (called the hidden states of the model). An HMM models time series of observations which are ordered sequences of values, that we can see evolving along with a time variable $t$.

Each state of the Markov chain is associated with a probability distribution (or a mixture of distributions) that are often called emission distributions.

At time $t=0$ a state is randomly chosen from an initial probability mass function. The observation at time $t=0$ is assumed to follow (or to have been generated) by the probability distribution associated to this chosen state. At time $t=1$, the system enters a new hidden state that is chosen from a transition matrix. The observation at time $t=1$ is assumed to follow (or to have been generated) by the probability distribution associated to this new chosen state.

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  • $\begingroup$ what my understanding is for a real dataset for instance consider diabetics dataset so my hidden states in hmm will be 0 or 1 (0-for non-diabetic, 1- for diabetic) and the observations will be the unique values associated with a single attribute in the dataset containing 8 attributes? $\endgroup$ – Devi Aug 29 '17 at 5:16
  • $\begingroup$ Please correct me if I am wrong in my understanding.. $\endgroup$ – Devi Aug 29 '17 at 5:17

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