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Forecasting Australian Macroeconomic Variables Using A Large Dataset




This paper investigates the forecasting performance of the diffusion index approach for the Australian economy, and considers the forecasting performance of the diffusion index approach relative to composite forecasts. Weighted and unweighted factor forecasts are benchmarked against composite forecasts, and forecasts derived from individual forecasting models. The results suggest that diffusion index forecasts tend to improve on the benchmark AR forecasts. We also observe that weighted factors tend to produce better forecasts than their unweighted counterparts. We find, however, that the size of the forecasting improvement is less marked than previous research, with the diffusion index forecasts typically producing mean square errors of a similar magnitude to the VAR and BVAR approaches. Copyright 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/University of Adelaide and Flinders University.

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  • Sarantis Tsiaplias & Chew Lian Chua, 2010. "Forecasting Australian Macroeconomic Variables Using A Large Dataset," Australian Economic Papers, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 49(1), pages 44-59, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ausecp:v:49:y:2010:i:1:p:44-59

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Forni, Mario & Hallin, Marc & Lippi, Marco & Reichlin, Lucrezia, 2005. "The Generalized Dynamic Factor Model: One-Sided Estimation and Forecasting," Journal of the American Statistical Association, American Statistical Association, vol. 100, pages 830-840, September.
    2. David A. Bessler & John L. Kling, 1986. "Forecasting Vector Autoregressions with Bayesian Priors," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 68(1), pages 144-151.
    3. Jushan Bai & Serena Ng, 2002. "Determining the Number of Factors in Approximate Factor Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(1), pages 191-221, January.
    4. Christian Schumacher, 2007. "Forecasting German GDP using alternative factor models based on large datasets," Journal of Forecasting, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 26(4), pages 271-302.
    5. Litterman, Robert B, 1986. "Forecasting with Bayesian Vector Autoregressions-Five Years of Experience," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 4(1), pages 25-38, January.
    6. Boivin, Jean & Ng, Serena, 2006. "Are more data always better for factor analysis?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 132(1), pages 169-194, May.
    7. Jean Boivin & Serena Ng, 2005. "Understanding and Comparing Factor-Based Forecasts," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 1(3), December.
    8. LeSage, James P, 1990. "A Comparison of the Forecasting Ability of ECM and VAR Models," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 72(4), pages 664-671, November.
    9. Stock, James H & Watson, Mark W, 2002. "Macroeconomic Forecasting Using Diffusion Indexes," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(2), pages 147-162, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Guay C. Lim & Chew Lian Chua & Edda Claus & Sarantis Tsiaplias, 2010. "Review of the Australian Economy 2009-10: On the Road to Recovery," Australian Economic Review, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, vol. 43(1), pages 1-11.
    2. de Silva, Ashton J, 2010. "Forecasting Australian Macroeconomic variables, evaluating innovations state space approaches," MPRA Paper 27411, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C22 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes
    • C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods
    • E17 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models - - - Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications


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