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The use of a mathematical model with different values as variables in order to determine the likelihood of a particular outcome. A simulation is run many times (often thousands) in order to find the most likely outcome. Running simulations is important for analysts who, for example, wish to predict a security's future price movements.
A mathematical exercise in which a model of a system is established, then the model's variables are altered to determine the effects on other variables. For example, a financial analyst might construct a model for predicting a stock's market price and then manipulate various determinants of the price including earnings, interest rates, and the inflation rate to determine how each of these changes affects the market price.