Is There a Jump in the Transition?
This article develops a statistical test for the presence of a jump in an otherwise smooth transition process. In this testing, the null model is a threshold regression and the alternative model is a smooth transition model. We propose a quasi-Gaussian likelihood ratio statistic and provide its asymptotic distribution, which is defined as the maximum of a two parameter Gaussian process with a nonzero bias term. Asymptotic critical values can be tabulated and depend on the transition function employed. A simulation method to compute empirical critical values is also developed. Finite-sample performance of the test is assessed via Monte Carlo simulations. The test is applied to investigate the dynamics of racial segregation within cities across the United States.