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Forecasting inflation with an uncertain output gap

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  • Hilde Bjørnland

    ()

  • Leif Brubakk
  • Anne Jore

Abstract

The output gap (measuring the deviation of output from its potential) is a crucial concept in the monetary policy framework, indicating demand pressure that generates inflation. The output gap is also an important variable in itself, as a measure of economic fluctuations. However, its definition and estimation raise a number of theoretical and empirical questions. This paper evaluates a series of univariate and multivariate methods for extracting the output gap, and compares their value added in predicting inflation. The multivariate measures of the output gap have by far the best predictive power. This is in particular interesting, as they use information from data that are not revised in real time. We therefore compare the predictive power of alternative indicators that are less revised in real time, such as the unemployment rate and other business cycle indicators. Some of the alternative indicators do as well, or better, than the multivariate output gaps in predicting inflation. As uncertainties are particularly pronounced at the end of the calculation periods, assessment of pressures in the economy based on the uncertain output gap could benefit from being supplemented with alternative indicators that are less evised in real time.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Empirical Economics.

Volume (Year): 35 (2008)
Issue (Month): 3 (November)
Pages: 413-436

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Handle: RePEc:spr:empeco:v:35:y:2008:i:3:p:413-436

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Related research

Keywords: Output gap; Forecast; Phillips curve; Forecast combination; C32; E31; E32; E37;

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Isabell Koske & Nigel Pain, 2008. "The Usefulness of Output Gaps for Policy Analysis," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 621, OECD Publishing.
  2. Matthieu Lemoine & Gian Luigi Mazzi & Paola Monperrus-Veroni & Frédéric Reynes, 2008. "Real time estimation of potential output and output gap for the euro-area: comparing production function with unobserved components and SVAR approaches," Documents de Travail de l'OFCE 2008-34, Observatoire Francais des Conjonctures Economiques (OFCE).
  3. Nicolas Alexis Cuche-Curti & Harris Dellas & Jean-Marc Natal, 2009. "A dynamic stochastic general equilibrium model for Switzerland," Economic Studies 2009-05, Swiss National Bank.
  4. Carlos Hamilton Vasconcelos Araujo & Osmani Teixeira de Carvalho Guillén, 2008. "Previsão de inflação com incerteza do hiato do produto no Brasil," Anais do XXXVI Encontro Nacional de Economia [Proceedings of the 36th Brazilian Economics Meeting] 200807211138520, ANPEC - Associação Nacional dos Centros de Pósgraduação em Economia [Brazilian Association of Graduate Programs in Economics].
  5. Ben Ali, Samir, 2010. "A New Keynesian Phillips curve for Tunisia : Estimation and analysis of sensitivity," MPRA Paper 29624, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. S. Adnan H. A. S., Bukhari & Safdar Ullah, Khan, 2008. "Estimating Output Gap for Pakistan Economy:Structural and Statistical Approaches," MPRA Paper 9736, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 20 Jun 2008.
  7. Ashima Goyal & Sanchit Arora, 2012. "Deriving India's Potential growth from theory and structure," Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai Working Papers 2012-018, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai, India.

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