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Financial Variables and the Simulated Out-of-Sample Forecastability of U.S. Output Growth Since 1985: An Encompassing Approach

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  • David E. Rapach
  • Christian E. Weber

Abstract

We reconsider the out-of-sample forecasting ability of a large number of financial variables with respect to real output growth over the 1985:1--1999:4 period. We show that models including financial variables display almost no forecasting ability relative to an autoregressive benchmark model over this period according to a mean squared forecast error metric. However, tests based on forecast encompassing indicate that many financial variables do, in fact, contain information that is useful for forecasting real output growth over the 1985:1--1999:4 out-of-sample period. Our results suggest that the extant literature exaggerates the demise of the forecasting power of financial variables with respect to real activity since the mid-1980s. (JEL C22, C53, E44, E32) Copyright 2004, Oxford University Press.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Western Economic Association International in its journal Economic Inquiry.

Volume (Year): 42 (2004)
Issue (Month): 4 (October)
Pages: 717-738

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Handle: RePEc:oup:ecinqu:v:42:y:2004:i:4:p:717-738

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Cited by:
  1. Joakim Westerlund & Paresh K Narayan, 2012. "Does the choice of estimator matter when forecasting returns?," Financial Econometics Series 2012_01, Deakin University, Faculty of Business and Law, School of Accounting, Economics and Finance.
  2. Wei, Xiaoqiao & Yang, Yuhong, 2012. "Robust forecast combinations," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 166(2), pages 224-236.
  3. Kirsten Thompson & Renee van Eyden & Rangan Gupta, 2013. "Identifying a financial conditions index for South Africa," Working Papers 201333, University of Pretoria, Department of Economics.
  4. Panopoulou, Ekaterini, 2007. "Predictive financial models of the euro area: A new evaluation test," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 695-705.
  5. Makin, Anthony J. & Narayan, Paresh Kumar & Narayan, Seema, 2014. "What expenditure does Anglosphere foreign borrowing fund?," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 63-78.
  6. Akhter Faroque & William Veloce & Jean-Francois Lamarche, 2009. "Have Structural Changes Eliminated the Out-of-Sample Ability of Financial Variables To Forecast Real Activity After the Mid-1980s? Evidence From the Canadian Economy," Working Papers 0910, Brock University, Department of Economics, revised Oct 2010.
  7. Kirsten Thompson & Renee van Eyden & Rangan Gupta, 2013. "Testing the Out-of-Sample Forecasting Ability of a Financial Conditions Index for South Africa," Working Papers 201383, University of Pretoria, Department of Economics.

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