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Seasonality, Forecast Extensions And Business Cycle Uncertainty

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  • Tommaso Proietti

Abstract

Seasonality is one of the most important features of economic time series. The possibility to abstract from seasonality for the assessment of economic conditions is a widely debated issue. In this paper we propose a strategy for assessing the role of seasonal adjustment on business cycle measurement. In particular, we provide a method for quantifying the contribution to the unreliability of the estimated cycles extracted by popular filters, such as Baxter and King and Hodrick-Prescott. The main conclusion is that the contribution is larger around the turning points of the series and at the extremes of the sample period; moreover, it much more sizeable for highpass filters, like the Hodrick-Prescott filter, which retain to a great extent the high frequency fluctuations in a time series, the latter being the ones that are more affected by seasonal adjustment. If a bandpass component is considered, the effect has reduced size. Finally, we discuss the role of forecast extensions and the prediction of the cycle. For the time series of industrial production considered in the illustration, it is not possible to provide a reliable estimate of the cycle at the end of the sample.
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Suggested Citation

  • Tommaso Proietti, 2012. "Seasonality, Forecast Extensions And Business Cycle Uncertainty," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 26(4), pages 555-569, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jecsur:v:26:y:2012:i:4:p:555-569
    DOI: j.1467-6419.2010.00660.x
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/j.1467-6419.2010.00660.x
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Pollock, D. S. G., 2003. "Improved frequency selective filters," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 279-297, March.
    2. [Reference to Proietti], Tommaso, 2000. "Comparing seasonal components for structural time series models," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 247-260.
    3. Siem Jan Koopman & Neil Shephard & Jurgen A. Doornik, 1999. "Statistical algorithms for models in state space using SsfPack 2.2," Econometrics Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 2(1), pages 107-160.
    4. Kaiser, Regina & Maravall, Agustin, 2005. "Combining filter design with model-based filtering (with an application to business-cycle estimation)," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 691-710.
    5. 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.
    6. King, Robert G. & Rebelo, Sergio T., 1993. "Low frequency filtering and real business cycles," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 17(1-2), pages 207-231.
    7. Durbin, James & Koopman, Siem Jan, 2012. "Time Series Analysis by State Space Methods," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, edition 2, number 9780199641178, June.
    8. Pollock, D. S. G., 2000. "Trend estimation and de-trending via rational square-wave filters," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 99(2), pages 317-334, December.
    9. Nerlove, Marc & Grether, David M. & Carvalho, José L., 1979. "Analysis of Economic Time Series," Elsevier Monographs, Elsevier, edition 1, number 9780125157506 edited by Shell, Karl.
    10. Morten O. Ravn & Harald Uhlig, 2002. "On adjusting the Hodrick-Prescott filter for the frequency of observations," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(2), pages 371-375.
    11. William R. Bell & Donald E. K. Martin, 2004. "Computation of asymmetric signal extraction filters and mean squared error for ARIMA component models," Journal of Time Series Analysis, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(4), pages 603-623, July.
    12. J. Durbin, 2002. "A simple and efficient simulation smoother for state space time series analysis," Biometrika, Biometrika Trust, vol. 89(3), pages 603-616, August.
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    JEL classification:

    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • C22 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes

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