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Has output become more predictable? changes in Greenbook forecast accuracy

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  • Peter Tulip
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    Abstract

    Several researchers have recently documented a large reduction in output volatility. In contrast, this paper examines whether output has become more predictable. Using forecasts from the Federal Reserve Greenbooks, I find the evidence is somewhat mixed. Output seems to have become more predictable at short horizons, but not necessarily at longer horizons. The reduction in unpredictability is much less than the reduction in volatility. Associated with this, recent forecasts had little predictive power.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.) in its series Finance and Economics Discussion Series with number 2005-31.

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    Date of creation: 2005
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    Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgfe:2005-31

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    Keywords: Economic forecasting;

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    1. Chang-Jin Kim & Charles R. Nelson, 1999. "Has The U.S. Economy Become More Stable? A Bayesian Approach Based On A Markov-Switching Model Of The Business Cycle," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 81(4), pages 608-616, November.
    2. Andrew Atkeson & Lee E. Ohanian., 2001. "Are Phillips curves useful for forecasting inflation?," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Win, pages 2-11.
    3. Olivier Blanchard & John Simon, 2001. "The Long and Large Decline in U.S. Output Volatility," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 32(1), pages 135-174.
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    Cited by:
    1. Rochelle M. Edge & Michael T. Kiley & Jean-Philippe Laforte, 2008. "A Comparison Of Forecast Performance Between Federal Reserve Staff Forecasts, Simple Reduced-Form Models, And A Dsge Model," CAMA Working Papers 2009-03, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
    2. Fabio Canova & Luca Gambetti, 2007. "Do expectations matter? The Great Moderation revisited," Economics Working Papers 1084, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Jan 2009.
    3. Tetlow, Robert J. & Ironside, Brian, 2006. "Real-time model uncertainty in the United States: the Fed from 1996-2003," Working Paper Series 0610, European Central Bank.
    4. Rudebusch, Glenn D. & Williams, John C., 2009. "Forecasting Recessions: The Puzzle of the Enduring Power of the Yield Curve," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 27(4), pages 492-503.
    5. David Reifschneider & Peter Tulip, 2007. "Gauging the uncertainty of the economic outlook from historical forecasting errors," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2007-60, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    6. Yash P. Mehra, 2006. "Inflation uncertainty and the recent low level of the long bond rate," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, issue Sum, pages 225-253.

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