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If the aim is not just forecasting but trying to get a good handle on which predictors are most important in some sense, in my view PCA is likely to be a distraction and its use to turn out to be a detour. You would be better off applying some flavour of regression directly. That is unlikely to be trivially easy and selection of predictors is a deep and ...


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Latent variable analyses, such as factor analysis, are useful when we want to analyze a construct that we can't measure directly in a single question, but which we think MIGHT be imperfectly measured by a whole bunch of different questions. They can be especially helpful if we're not even sure that the thing we want to measure even exists, but we need to ...


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In general, latent variables are some variables we can't directly measure. That is, we cannot directly measure an 8th graders' level of math knowledge, simply because we cant directly connect to their brains and perform this measurement (unlike physical attributes, for example, which we can directly measure). So we provide them with a set of math-related ...


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