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The Effect of Seasonal Adjustment on the Properties of Business Cycle Regimes

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We study the impact of seasonal adjustment on the properties of business cycle expansion and recession regimes using analytical, simulation and empirical methods. Analytically, we show that the X-11 adjustment filter both reduces the magnitude of change at turning points and reduces the depth of recessions, with specific effects depending on the length of the recession. A simulation analysis using Markov switching models confirms these properties, with particularly undesirable effects in delaying the recognition of the end of a recession. However, seasonal adjustment can have desirable properties in clarifying the true regime when this is well underway. The empirical findings, based on four coincident US business cycle indicators, reinforce the analytical and simulation results by showing that seasonal adjustment leads to the identification of longer and shallower recessions than obtained using unadjusted data.

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Paper provided by Universita' degli Studi di Firenze, Dipartimento di Statistica, Informatica, Applicazioni "G. Parenti" in its series Econometrics Working Papers Archive with number wp2005_15.

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Length: 37
Date of creation: Sep 2005
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Publication status: forthcoming Journal of Applied Econometrics
Handle: RePEc:fir:econom:wp2005_15

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  1. Stephen G. Cecchetti & Anil K Kashyap, 1995. "International Cycles," NBER Working Papers 5310, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Ghysels,Eric & Osborn,Denise R., 2001. "The Econometric Analysis of Seasonal Time Series," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521562607, April.
  3. Matas-Mir, Antonio & Osborn, Denise R., 2004. "Does seasonality change over the business cycle? An investigation using monthly industrial production series," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(6), pages 1309-1332, December.
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  6. A Matas-Mir & D R Osborn, 2003. "Seasonal Adjustment and the Detection of Business Cycle Phases," Centre for Growth and Business Cycle Research Discussion Paper Series 26, Economics, The Univeristy of Manchester.
  7. S. Krane & W. Wascher, 1999. "The cyclical sensitivity of seasonality in US employment," BIS Working Papers 67, Bank for International Settlements.
  8. Findley, David F, et al, 1998. "New Capabilities and Methods of the X-12-ARIMA Seasonal-Adjustment Program," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 16(2), pages 127-52, April.
  9. Rob Luginbuhl & Aart de Vos, 2003. "Seasonality and Markov switching in an unobserved component time series model," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 28(2), pages 365-386, 04.
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  12. Bruce E. Hansen, 1995. "Approximate Asymptotic P-Values for Structural Change Tests," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 297., Boston College Department of Economics.
  13. Ghysels, Eric & Perron, Pierre, 1996. "The effect of linear filters on dynamic time series with structural change," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 70(1), pages 69-97, January.
  14. Bell, William R & Hillmer, Steven C, 1984. "Issues Involved with the Seasonal Adjustment of Economic Time Series," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 2(4), pages 291-320, October.
  15. Barsky, Robert B & Miron, Jeffrey A, 1989. "The Seasonal Cycle and the Business Cycle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(3), pages 503-34, June.
  16. Ghysels, E. & Perron, P., 1990. "The Effect Of Seasonal Adjustment Filters On Tests For A Unit Root," Papers 355, Princeton, Department of Economics - Econometric Research Program.
  17. Hamilton, James D, 1989. "A New Approach to the Economic Analysis of Nonstationary Time Series and the Business Cycle," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(2), pages 357-84, March.
  18. Christiano, Lawrence J. & Todd, Richard M., 2002. "The conventional treatment of seasonality in business cycle analysis: does it create distortions?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 335-364, March.
  19. James Morley & Jeremy M. Piger, 2005. "The importance of nonlinearity in reproducing business cycle features," Working Papers 2004-032, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  20. Burridge, Peter & Wallis, Kenneth F, 1983. "Unobserved-Components Models for Seasonal Adjustment Filters," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 244, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  21. Ghysels, Eric & Granger, Clive W J & Siklos, Pierre L, 1996. "Is Seasonal Adjustment a Linear or Nonlinear Data-Filtering Process?," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 14(3), pages 374-86, July.
  22. Franses, Philip Hans & Paap, Richard, 1999. "Does Seasonality Influence the Dating of Business Cycle Turning Points?," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 79-92, January.
  23. Hamilton, James D., 1990. "Analysis of time series subject to changes in regime," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 45(1-2), pages 39-70.
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