Forecasting stock market crashes via machine learning
This paper uses a comprehensive set of predictor variables from the five largest Eurozone countries to compare the performance of simple univariate and machine learning-based multivariate models in forecasting stock market crashes. In terms of statistical predictive performance, a support vector machine-based crash prediction model outperforms a random classifier and is superior to the average univariate benchmark as well as a multivariate logistic regression model. Incorporating nonlinear and interactive effects is both imperative and foundation for the outperformance of support vector machines. Their ability to forecast stock market crashes out-of-sample translates into substantial value-added to active investors. From a policy perspective, the use of machine learning-based crash prediction models can help activate macroprudential tools in time.