Continuing increases in computing power and availability mean that many maximum likelihood estimation (MLE) problems previously thought intractable or too computationally difficult can now be tackled numerically. However, ML parameter estimation for distributions whose only analytical expression is as quantile functions has received little attention. Numerical MLE procedures for parameters of new families of distributions, the g-and-k and the generalized g-and-h distributions, are presented and investigated here. Simulation studies are included, and the appropriateness of using asymptotic methods examined. Because of the generality of these distributions, the investigations are not only into numerical MLE for these distributions, but are also an initial investigation into the performance and problems for numerical MLE applied to quantile-defined distributions in general. Datasets are also fitted using the procedures here. Results indicate that sample sizes significantly larger than 100 should be used to obtain reliable estimates through maximum likelihood.
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Rayner, G.D., MacGillivray, H.L. Numerical maximum likelihood estimation for the g-and-k and generalized g-and-h distributions. Statistics and Computing 12, 57–75 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1013120305780