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Nowcasting

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  • Bańbura, Marta
  • Giannone, Domenico
  • Reichlin, Lucrezia

Abstract

We define nowcasting as the prediction of the present, the very near future and the very recent past. Crucial in this process is to use timely monthly information in order to nowcast key economic variables, such as e.g. GDP, that are typically collected at low frequency and published with long delays. Until recently, nowcasting had received very little attention by the academic literature, although it was routinely conducted in policy institutions either through a judgemental process or on the basis of simple models. We argue that the nowcasting process goes beyond the simple production of an early estimate as it essentially requires the assessment of the impact of new data on the subsequent forecast revisions for the target variable. We design a statistical model which produces a sequence of nowcasts in relation to the real time releases of various economic data. The methodology allows to process a large amount of information, as it is traditionally done by practitioners using judgement, but it does it in a fully automatic way. In particular, it provides an explicit link between the news in consecutive data releases and the resulting forecast revisions. To illustrate our ideas, we study the nowcast of euro area GDP in the fourth quarter of 2008. JEL Classification: E52, C53, C33

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by European Central Bank in its series Working Paper Series with number 1275.

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Date of creation: Dec 2010
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Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20101275

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Keywords: factor model; forecasting; news; Nowcasting;

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  1. S. Boragan Aruoba & Francis X. Diebold & Chiara Scotti, 2008. "Real-Time Measurement of Business Conditions," NBER Working Papers 14349, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Doz, Catherine & Giannone, Domenico & Reichlin, Lucrezia, 2006. "A Quasi Maximum Likelihood Approach for Large Approximate Dynamic Factor Models," CEPR Discussion Papers 5724, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Antonello D'Agostino & Kieran McQuinn & Derry O’Brien, 2012. "Nowcasting Irish GDP," OECD Journal: Journal of Business Cycle Measurement and Analysis, OECD Publishing,CIRET, vol. 2012(2), pages 21-31.
  4. Knut Aastveit & Tørres Trovik, 2012. "Nowcasting norwegian GDP: the role of asset prices in a small open economy," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 42(1), pages 95-119, February.
  5. Domenico Giannone & Lucrezia Reichlin & David Small, 2005. "Nowcasting GDP and inflation: the real-time informational content of macroeconomic data releases," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2005-42, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  6. Banbura, Marta & Giannone, Domenico & Reichlin, Lucrezia, 2007. "Bayesian VARs with Large Panels," CEPR Discussion Papers 6326, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Bańbura, Marta & Rünstler, Gerhard, 2011. "A look into the factor model black box: Publication lags and the role of hard and soft data in forecasting GDP," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 333-346.
  8. Matheson, Troy D., 2010. "An analysis of the informational content of New Zealand data releases: The importance of business opinion surveys," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 304-314, January.
  9. Filippo Altissimo & Riccardo Cristadoro & Mario Forni & Marco Lippi & Giovanni Veronese, 2007. "New Eurocoin: Tracking Economic Growth in Real Time," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 631, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  10. Marcellino, Massimiliano & Schumacher, Christian, 2007. "Factor-MIDAS for now- and forecasting with ragged-edge data: a model comparison for German GDP," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2007,34, Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre.
  11. Angelini, Elena & Camba-Méndez, Gonzalo & Giannone, Domenico & Rünstler, Gerhard & Reichlin, Lucrezia, 2008. "Short-term forecasts of euro area GDP growth," Working Paper Series 0949, European Central Bank.
  12. Mario Forni & Marc Hallin & Lucrezia Reichlin & Marco Lippi, 2000. "The generalised dynamic factor model: identification and estimation," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/10143, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  13. Barhoumi, K. & Rünstler, G. & Cristadoro, R. & Den Reijer, A. & Jakaitiene, A. & Jelonek, P. & Rua, A. & Ruth, K. & Benk, S. & Van Nieuwenhuyze, C., 2008. "Short-term forecasting of GDP using large monthly datasets: a pseudo real-time forecast evaluation exercise," Working papers 215, Banque de France.
  14. Proietti, Tommaso, 2008. "Estimation of Common Factors under Cross-Sectional and Temporal Aggregation Constraints: Nowcasting Monthly GDP and its Main Components," MPRA Paper 6860, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  15. Ghysels, Eric & Santa-Clara, Pedro & Valkanov, Rossen, 2004. "The MIDAS Touch: Mixed Data Sampling Regression Models," University of California at Los Angeles, Anderson Graduate School of Management qt9mf223rs, Anderson Graduate School of Management, UCLA.
  16. Domenico Giannone & Lucrezia Reichlin & Saverio Simonelli, 2009. "Nowcasting Euro Area Economic Activity in Real-Time: The Role of Confidence Indicator," Working Papers ECARES 2009_021, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  17. Mario Forno & Marco Lippi & Lucrezia Reichlin & Filippo Altissimo & Antonio Bassanetti, 2003. "Eurocoin: A Real Time Coincident Indicator Of The Euro Area Business Cycle," Computing in Economics and Finance 2003 242, Society for Computational Economics.
  18. Schumacher, Christian & Breitung, Jörg, 2008. "Real-time forecasting of German GDP based on a large factor model with monthly and quarterly data," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 386-398.
  19. Diron, Marie, 2006. "Short-term forecasts of euro area real GDP growth: an assessment of real-time performance based on vintage data," Working Paper Series 0622, European Central Bank.
  20. Bańbura, Marta & Modugno, Michele, 2010. "Maximum likelihood estimation of factor models on data sets with arbitrary pattern of missing data," Working Paper Series 1189, European Central Bank.
  21. Filippo Altissimo & Antonio Bassanetti & Riccardo Cristadoro & Mario Forni & Marco Lippi & Lucrezia Reichlin & Giovanni Veronese, 2001. "A real time coincident indicator of the euro area business cycle," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 436, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  22. Roberto S. Mariano & Yasutomo Murasawa, 2003. "A new coincident index of business cycles based on monthly and quarterly series," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(4), pages 427-443.
  23. Durbin, James & Koopman, Siem Jan, 2001. "Time Series Analysis by State Space Methods," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198523543.
  24. Marta Bańbura, 2008. "Large Bayesian VARs," 2008 Meeting Papers 334, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  25. Camacho, Maximo & Pérez-Quirós, Gabriel, 2009. "Introducing the Euro-STING: Short-Term Indicator of Euro Area Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 7343, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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