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Do Consumer Confidence Indexes Help Forecast Consumer Spending in Real Time?

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  • Croushore, Dean

Abstract

Could a researcher or policy analyst use data reported from surveys of consumer confidence to improve forecasts of consumer spending? This issue has been examined in the literature previously, which reached the conclusion that consumer confidence helped improve the forecasts slightly. But that research was based on final, revised data and thus did not use the data that would have been available to forecasters in real time. This paper remedies that shortcoming, using the Real-Time Data Set for Macroeconomists to analyze the quality of forecasts made with indexes of consumer confidence. The main finding is that the indexes of consumer confidence are not of significant value in forecasting consumer spending. In fact, in some cases, they make the forecasts significantly worse. --

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre in its series Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies with number 2004,27.

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Date of creation: 2004
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:bubdp1:2293

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  1. Jason Bram & Sydney Ludvigson, 1997. "Does consumer confidence forecast household expenditure?: A sentiment index horse race," Research Paper 9708, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  2. Hamerle, Alfred & Liebig, Thilo & Scheule, Harald, 2004. "Forecasting Credit Portfolio Risk," Discussion Paper Series 2: Banking and Financial Studies 2004,01, Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre.
  3. Harvey, David & Leybourne, Stephen & Newbold, Paul, 1997. "Testing the equality of prediction mean squared errors," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 281-291, June.
  4. Dean Croushore & Tom Stark, 1999. "A real-time data set for macroeconomists," Working Papers 99-4, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  5. Carroll, Christopher D & Fuhrer, Jeffrey C & Wilcox, David W, 1994. "Does Consumer Sentiment Forecast Household Spending? If So, Why?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1397-1408, December.
  6. Tom Stark & Dean Croushore, 2001. "Forecasting with a real-time data set for macroeconomists," Working Papers 01-10, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  7. Easaw, Joshy Z. & Heravi, Saeed M., 2004. "Evaluating consumer sentiments as predictors of UK household consumption behavior: Are they accurate and useful?," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 671-681.
  8. Diebold, Francis X & Mariano, Roberto S, 1995. "Comparing Predictive Accuracy," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 13(3), pages 253-63, July.
  9. E. Philip Howrey, 2001. "The Predictive Power of the Index of Consumer Sentiment," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 32(1), pages 175-216.
  10. Yash P. Mehra & Elliot W. Martin, 2003. "Why does consumer sentiment predict household spending?," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, issue Fall, pages 51-67.
  11. Tom Stark, 2000. "Does current-quarter information improve quarterly forecasts for the U.S. economy?," Working Papers 00-2, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  12. Stark, Tom & Croushore, Dean, 2002. "Reply to the comments on 'Forecasting with a real-time data set for macroeconomists'," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 563-567, December.
  13. Eric M. Leeper, 1992. "Consumer attitudes: king for a day," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, issue Jul, pages 1-15.
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Cited by:
  1. Boriss Siliverstovs & Konstantin A. Kholodilin, 2012. "Assessing the Real-Time Informational Content of Macroeconomic Data Releases for Now-/Forecasting GDP: Evidence for Switzerland," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), Justus-Liebig University Giessen, Department of Statistics and Economics, vol. 232(4), pages 429-444, July.
  2. Md. Kabir Ahmed Chowdhury & G.M. Abul Kalam Azad, 2010. "Consumer Confidence in Financial Markets," Working Papers id:3265, eSocialSciences.
  3. Boriss Siliverstovs, 2010. "Assessing Predictive Content of the KOF Barometer in Real Time," KOF Working papers 10-249, KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich.
  4. Dean Croushore, 2008. "Frontiers of real-time data analysis," Working Papers 08-4, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  5. Gomes, Orlando, 2007. "Consumer confidence, endogenous growth and endogenous cycles," MPRA Paper 2883, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. Robert B. Barsky & Eric R. Sims, 2012. "Information, Animal Spirits, and the Meaning of Innovations in Consumer Confidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(4), pages 1343-77, June.
  7. Dudek, Sławomir, 2008. "Consumer Survey Data and short-term forecasting of households consumption expenditures in Poland," MPRA Paper 19818, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  8. Hara, Naoko & Ichiue, Hibiki, 2011. "Real-time analysis on Japan's labor productivity," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 107-130, June.
  9. Simeon Vosen & Torsten Schmidt, 2011. "Forecasting private consumption: survey‐based indicators vs. Google trends," Journal of Forecasting, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 30(6), pages 565-578, September.
  10. Hutson, Mark & Joutz, Fred & Stekler, Herman, 2014. "Interpreting and evaluating CESIfo's World Economic Survey directional forecasts," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 6-11.
  11. Aleksejs Melihovs & Svetlana Rusakova, 2005. "Short-Term Forecasting of Economic Development in Latvia Using Business and Consumer Survey Data," Working Papers 2005/04, Latvijas Banka.

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