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Econometric Modeling as Information Aggregation

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Abstract

The information contained in the forecasts from two econometric models can be compared by regressing the actual change in the variable forecasted on the two forecasts of the change. We do such comparisons in this paper, where the forecasts are based only on information through the period prior to the first period of the forecast. If a model's forecast is statistically significant in such a regression, we conclude that the model captures information not in the other model whose forecast is also included in the regression. The models studied include the Fair model, vector autoregressive (VAR) models estimated by ordinary least squares, vector autoregressive models estimated with Litterman priors, and a new class of models, which we call "autoregressive components: (AC) models. The AC models divide GNP into components and estimate an autoregressive equation for each component. Our results show that the Fair model's forecasts contain information not in the forecasts of the VAR and AC models. The AC models contain no information not in the Fair model, which indicates that the Fair model uses all the useful information in the components. The VAR models contain information not in the Fair model for the four-quarter-ahead forecasts but not the one- quarter-ahead forecasts. The best AC model contains information not in the best VAR model, which indicates that there is useful information in the components that the VAR models are not using. The best VAR model contains information not in the best AC model for the four-quarter-ahead forecasts but not the one-quarter-ahead forecasts.

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File URL: http://cowles.econ.yale.edu/P/cd/d08a/d0833-r.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University in its series Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers with number 833R.

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Length: 25 pages
Date of creation: 1987
Date of revision: Jan 1988
Publication status: Published in American Economic Review (June 1990), 80(3): 376-389
Handle: RePEc:cwl:cwldpp:833r

Note: CFP 754.
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Keywords: Forecasting; autoregressive components model;

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References

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  1. Peter C.B. Phillips & Steven N. Durlauf, 1985. "Multiple Time Series Regression with Integrated Processes," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 768, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  2. White, Halbert, 1980. "A Heteroskedasticity-Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimator and a Direct Test for Heteroskedasticity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(4), pages 817-38, May.
  3. Robert B. Litterman, 1979. "Techniques of forecasting using vector autoregressions," Working Papers 115, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  4. Robert B. Litterman, 1984. "Forecasting with Bayesian vector autoregressions four years of experience," Staff Report 95, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  5. Chong, Yock Y & Hendry, David F, 1986. "Econometric Evaluation of Linear Macro-Economic Models," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(4), pages 671-90, August.
  6. Cumby, Robert E. & Huizinga, John & Obstfeld, Maurice, 1983. "Two-step two-stage least squares estimation in models with rational expectations," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 333-355, April.
  7. Davidson, Russell & MacKinnon, James G, 1981. "Several Tests for Model Specification in the Presence of Alternative Hypotheses," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(3), pages 781-93, May.
  8. Hendry, David F. & Richard, Jean-Francois, 1982. "On the formulation of empirical models in dynamic econometrics," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 3-33, October.
  9. Hansen, Lars Peter, 1982. "Large Sample Properties of Generalized Method of Moments Estimators," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(4), pages 1029-54, July.
  10. Engle, Robert F & Granger, Clive W J, 1987. "Co-integration and Error Correction: Representation, Estimation, and Testing," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(2), pages 251-76, March.
  11. Mizon, Grayham E & Richard, Jean-Francois, 1986. "The Encompassing Principle and Its Application to Testing Non-nested Hypotheses," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(3), pages 657-78, May.
  12. Fair, Ray C, 1978. "The Sensitivity of Fiscal Policy Effects to Assumptions about the Behavior of the Federal Reserve," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(5), pages 1165-79, September.
  13. Sims, Christopher A, 1980. "Macroeconomics and Reality," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(1), pages 1-48, January.
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Cited by:
  1. Robert J. Shiller, 1987. "Ultimate Sources of Aggregate Variability," NBER Working Papers 2129, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Ray C. Fair, 1987. "VAR Models as Structural Approximations," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 856R, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University, revised Mar 1989.

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