It is shown that the steepest descent and Newton's method for unconstrained nonconvex optimization under standard assumptions may be both require a number of iterations and function evaluations arbitrarily close to O(epsilon^{-2}) to drive the norm of the gradient below epsilon. This shows that the upper bound of O(epsilon^{-2}) evaluations known for the steepest descent is tight, and that Newton's method may be as slow as steepest descent in the worst case. The improved evaluation complexity bound of O(epsilon^{-3/2}) evaluations known for cubically-regularised Newton methods is also shown to be tight.

## Citation

Report 09/14, Department of Mathematics, FUNDP-University of Namur, Namur, Belgium