In this paper, a Bayesian hierarchical model for variable selection and estimation in the context of binary quantile regression is proposed. Existing approaches to variable selection in a binary classification context are sensitive to outliers, heteroskedasticity or other anomalies of the latent response. The method proposed in this study overcomes these problems in an attractive and straightforward way. A Laplace likelihood and Laplace priors for the regression parameters are proposed and estimated with Bayesian Markov Chain Monte Carlo. The resulting model is equivalent to the frequentist lasso procedure. A conceptional result is that by doing so, the binary regression model is moved from a Gaussian to a full Laplacian framework without sacrificing much computational efficiency. In addition, an efficient Gibbs sampler to estimate the model parameters is proposed that is superior to the Metropolis algorithm that is used in previous studies on Bayesian binary quantile regression. Both the simulation studies and the real data analysis indicate that the proposed method performs well in comparison to the other methods. Moreover, as the base model is binary quantile regression, a much more detailed insight in the effects of the covariates is provided by the approach. An implementation of the lasso procedure for binary quantile regression models is available in the R-package bayesQR.
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