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Evaluating German Business Cycle Forecasts Under an Asymmetric Loss Function

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Author Info

  • Jörg Döpke

    ()
    (University of Applied Sciences Merseburg, Merseburg/Germany)

  • Ulrich Fritsche

    ()
    (Hamburg University, Faculty Economics and Social Sciences and German Institute of Economic Research, Hamburg/Germany)

  • Boriss Siliverstovs

    ()
    (KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zürich)

Abstract

Based on annual data for growth and inflation forecasts for Germany covering the time span from 1970 to 2007 and up to 17 different forecasts per year, we test for a possible asymmetry of the forecasters' loss function and estimate the degree of asymmetry for each forecasting institution using the approach of Elliot et al. (2005). Furthermore, we test for the rationality of the forecasts under the assumption of a possibly asymmetric loss function and for the features of an optimal forecast under the assumption of a generalized loss function. We find evidence for the existence of an asymmetric loss function of German forecasters only in case of pooled data and a quad-quad loss function. We cannot reject the hypothesis of rationality of the growth forecasts based on data for single institutions, but based on a pooled data set. The rationality of inflation forecasts frequently is rejected in case of single institutions and also for pooled data.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich in its series KOF Working papers with number 09-237.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:kof:wpskof:09-237

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Keywords: Business cycle forecast evaluation; asymmetric loss function; and rational expectations;

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References

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  1. Osterloh, Steffen, 2006. "Accuracy and properties of German business cycle forecasts," ZEW Discussion Papers 06-87, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  2. George A. Christodoulakis & Emmanuel C. Mamatzakis, 2008. "An assessment of the EU growth forecasts under asymmetric preferences," Journal of Forecasting, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(6), pages 483-492.
  3. Jonas Dovern & Johannes Weisser, 2008. "Are They Really Rational? Assessing Professional Macro-Economic Forecasts from the G7-Countries," Kiel Working Papers 1447, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  4. Artis, M. & Marcellino, M., 1999. "Fiscal Forecasting: the Track Record of the IMF, OECD and EC," Economics Working Papers eco99/22, European University Institute.
  5. Christoffersen & Diebold, . "Optimal Prediction Under Asymmetric Loss," Home Pages 167, 1996., University of Pennsylvania.
  6. G. A. Christodoulakis & E. C. Mamatzakis, 2009. "Assessing the prudence of economic forecasts in the EU," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(4), pages 583-606.
  7. Graham Elliott & Ivana Komunjer & Allan Timmermann, 2005. "Biases In Macroeconomic Forecasts: Irrationality Or Asymmetric Loss?," CAMA Working Papers 2005-14, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
  8. Engle, Robert F, 1982. "Autoregressive Conditional Heteroscedasticity with Estimates of the Variance of United Kingdom Inflation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(4), pages 987-1007, July.
  9. Fildes, Robert & Stekler, Herman, 2002. "The state of macroeconomic forecasting," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 435-468, December.
  10. Hansen, Bruce E & West, Kenneth D, 2002. "Generalized Method of Moments and Macroeconomics," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(4), pages 460-69, October.
  11. Ager, P. & Kappler, M. & Osterloh, S., 2009. "The accuracy and efficiency of the Consensus Forecasts: A further application and extension of the pooled approach," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 167-181.
  12. Patton, Andrew J. & Timmermann, Allan, 2007. "Testing Forecast Optimality Under Unknown Loss," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 102, pages 1172-1184, December.
  13. Alan S. Blinder, 1999. "Central Banking in Theory and Practice," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262522608, December.
  14. Batchelor, Roy & Peel, David A., 1998. "Rationality testing under asymmetric loss," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 49-54, October.
  15. Graham Elliott & Allan Timmermann & Ivana Komunjer, 2005. "Estimation and Testing of Forecast Rationality under Flexible Loss," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(4), pages 1107-1125.
  16. Clive W.J. Granger, 1999. "Outline of forecast theory using generalized cost functions," Spanish Economic Review, Springer, vol. 1(2), pages 161-173.
  17. David Laster & Paul Bennett & In Sun Geoum, 1999. "Rational Bias In Macroeconomic Forecasts," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(1), pages 293-318, February.
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Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. The loss aversion of economic forecasters
    by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2009-12-01 13:59:00
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Cited by:
  1. Ulrich Fritsche & Christian Pierdzioch & Jan-Christoph Ruelke & Georg Stadtmann, 2012. "Forecasting the Brazilian Real and the Mexican Peso: Asymmetric Loss, Forecast Rationality, and Forecaster Herding," Macroeconomics and Finance Series 201202, Hamburg University, Department Wirtschaft und Politik.
  2. Jan-Christoph Ruelke, 2012. "Do Private Sector Forecasters Desire to Deviate From the German Council of Economic Experts?," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), Justus-Liebig University Giessen, Department of Statistics and Economics, vol. 232(4), pages 414-428, July.
  3. Jens J. Krüger, 2014. "A multivariate evaluation of German output growth and inflation forecasts," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 34(3), pages 1410-1418.
  4. Christian Pierdzioch & Jan-Christoph R�lke & Georg Stadtmann, 2013. "Oil price forecasting under asymmetric loss," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(17), pages 2371-2379, June.
  5. Krüger, Jens J. & Hoss, Julian, 2012. "German business cycle forecasts, asymmetric loss and financial variables," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 114(3), pages 284-287.
  6. Tsuchiya, Yoichi, 2012. "Evaluating Japanese corporate executives’ forecasts under an asymmetric loss function," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 116(3), pages 601-603.
  7. Claudia M. Buch & Oliver Holtemöller, 2014. "Do We Need New Modelling Approaches in Macroeconomics?," IWH Discussion Papers 8, Halle Institute for Economic Research.
  8. Pierdzioch, Christian & Rülke, Jan-Christoph & Stadtmann, Georg, 2012. "On the loss function of the Bank of Canada: A note," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 115(2), pages 155-159.

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