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Optimal Rates for Multi-pass Stochastic Gradient Methods

Junhong Lin, Lorenzo Rosasco; 18(97):1−47, 2017.


We analyze the learning properties of the stochastic gradient method when multiple passes over the data and mini-batches are allowed. We study how regularization properties are controlled by the step-size, the number of passes and the mini-batch size. In particular, we consider the square loss and show that for a universal step-size choice, the number of passes acts as a regularization parameter, and optimal finite sample bounds can be achieved by early-stopping. Moreover, we show that larger step-sizes are allowed when considering mini-batches. Our analysis is based on a unifying approach, encompassing both batch and stochastic gradient methods as special cases. As a byproduct, we derive optimal convergence results for batch gradient methods (even in the non-attainable cases).

© JMLR 2017. (edit, beta)