IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/ejores/v237y2014i1p152-163.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

‘Horses for Courses’ in demand forecasting

Author

Listed:
  • Petropoulos, Fotios
  • Makridakis, Spyros
  • Assimakopoulos, Vassilios
  • Nikolopoulos, Konstantinos

Abstract

Forecasting as a scientific discipline has progressed a lot in the last 40years, with Nobel prizes being awarded for seminal work in the field, most notably to Engle, Granger and Kahneman. Despite these advances, even today we are unable to answer a very simple question, the one that is always the first tabled during discussions with practitioners: “what is the best method for my data?”. In essence, as there are horses for courses, there must also be forecasting methods that are more tailored to some types of data, and, therefore, enable practitioners to make informed method selection when facing new data. The current study attempts to shed light on this direction via identifying the main determinants of forecasting accuracy, through simulations and empirical investigations involving 14 popular forecasting methods (and combinations of them), seven time series features (seasonality, trend, cycle, randomness, number of observations, inter-demand interval and coefficient of variation) and one strategic decision (the forecasting horizon). Our main findings dictate that forecasting accuracy is influenced as follows: (a) for fast-moving data, cycle and randomness have the biggest (negative) effect and the longer the forecasting horizon, the more accuracy decreases; (b) for intermittent data, inter-demand interval has bigger (negative) impact than the coefficient of variation; and (c) for all types of data, increasing the length of a series has a small positive effect.

Suggested Citation

  • Petropoulos, Fotios & Makridakis, Spyros & Assimakopoulos, Vassilios & Nikolopoulos, Konstantinos, 2014. "‘Horses for Courses’ in demand forecasting," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 237(1), pages 152-163.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ejores:v:237:y:2014:i:1:p:152-163
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ejor.2014.02.036
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0377221714001714
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.1016/j.ejor.2014.02.036?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Makridakis, Spyros & Hibon, Michele, 2000. "The M3-Competition: results, conclusions and implications," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 451-476.
    2. Peter R. Winters, 1960. "Forecasting Sales by Exponentially Weighted Moving Averages," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 6(3), pages 324-342, April.
    3. Crone, Sven F. & Hibon, Michèle & Nikolopoulos, Konstantinos, 2011. "Advances in forecasting with neural networks? Empirical evidence from the NN3 competition on time series prediction," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 635-660.
    4. Cao, Qing & Ewing, Bradley T. & Thompson, Mark A., 2012. "Forecasting wind speed with recurrent neural networks," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 221(1), pages 148-154.
    5. Kolassa, Stephan, 2011. "Combining exponential smoothing forecasts using Akaike weights," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 238-251, April.
    6. Ronald L. Cooper, 1972. "The Predictive Performance of Quarterly Econometric Models of the United States," NBER Chapters, in: Econometric Models of Cyclical Behavior, Volumes 1 and 2, pages 813-947, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Athanasopoulos, George & Ahmed, Roman A. & Hyndman, Rob J., 2009. "Hierarchical forecasts for Australian domestic tourism," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 146-166.
    8. Robert Fildes, 1989. "Evaluation of Aggregate and Individual Forecast Method Selection Rules," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 35(9), pages 1056-1065, September.
    9. Clemen, Robert T., 1989. "Combining forecasts: A review and annotated bibliography," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 5(4), pages 559-583.
    10. Gardner Jr., Everette S. & Diaz-Saiz, Joaquin, 2008. "Exponential smoothing in the telecommunications data," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 170-174.
    11. Hyndman, Rob J. & Billah, Baki, 2003. "Unmasking the Theta method," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 287-290.
    12. Franses, Philip Hans & van Dijk, Dick, 2005. "The forecasting performance of various models for seasonality and nonlinearity for quarterly industrial production," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 87-102.
    13. Syntetos, Aris A. & Boylan, John E., 2005. "The accuracy of intermittent demand estimates," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 303-314.
    14. Spyros Makridakis & Robert L. Winkler, 1983. "Averages of Forecasts: Some Empirical Results," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 29(9), pages 987-996, September.
    15. Hibon, Michele & Evgeniou, Theodoros, 2005. "To combine or not to combine: selecting among forecasts and their combinations," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 15-24.
    16. Hyndman, Rob J. & Koehler, Anne B. & Snyder, Ralph D. & Grose, Simone, 2002. "A state space framework for automatic forecasting using exponential smoothing methods," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 439-454.
    17. Shah, Chandra, 1997. "Model selection in univariate time series forecasting using discriminant analysis," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 489-500, December.
    18. Tashman, Leonard J., 2000. "Out-of-sample tests of forecasting accuracy: an analysis and review," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 437-450.
    19. Gene K. Groff, 1973. "Empirical Comparison of Models for Short Range Forecasting," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 20(1), pages 22-31, September.
    20. Assimakopoulos, V. & Nikolopoulos, K., 2000. "The theta model: a decomposition approach to forecasting," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 521-530.
    21. Syntetos, A. A. & Boylan, J. E., 2001. "On the bias of intermittent demand estimates," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(1-3), pages 457-466, May.
    22. Cang, Shuang & Yu, Hongnian, 2014. "A combination selection algorithm on forecasting," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 234(1), pages 127-139.
    23. Billah, Baki & King, Maxwell L. & Snyder, Ralph D. & Koehler, Anne B., 2006. "Exponential smoothing model selection for forecasting," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 239-247.
    24. Robert M. Kirby, 1966. "A Comparison of Short and Medium Range Statistical Forecasting Methods," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 13(4), pages 202-210, December.
    25. Athanasopoulos, George & Hyndman, Rob J. & Song, Haiyan & Wu, Doris C., 2011. "The tourism forecasting competition," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 822-844, July.
    26. Bozos, Konstantinos & Nikolopoulos, Konstantinos, 2011. "Forecasting the value effect of seasoned equity offering announcements," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 214(2), pages 418-427, October.
    27. Fred Collopy & J. Scott Armstrong, 1992. "Rule-Based Forecasting: Development and Validation of an Expert Systems Approach to Combining Time Series Extrapolations," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 38(10), pages 1394-1414, October.
    28. Miller, Don M. & Williams, Dan, 2003. "Shrinkage estimators of time series seasonal factors and their effect on forecasting accuracy," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 669-684.
    29. Broyles, James R. & Cochran, Jeffery K. & Montgomery, Douglas C., 2010. "A statistical Markov chain approximation of transient hospital inpatient inventory," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 207(3), pages 1645-1657, December.
    30. Slovic, Paul, 1972. "Psychological Study of Human Judgment: Implications for Investment Decision-Making," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 27(4), pages 779-799, September.
    31. Taylor, James W., 2008. "Exponentially weighted information criteria for selecting among forecasting models," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 513-524.
    32. Makridakis, Spyros & Chatfield, Chris & Hibon, Michele & Lawrence, Michael & Mills, Terence & Ord, Keith & Simmons, LeRoy F., 1993. "The M2-competition: A real-time judgmentally based forecasting study," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 9(1), pages 5-22, April.
    33. Hyndman, Rob J. & Koehler, Anne B., 2006. "Another look at measures of forecast accuracy," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 679-688.
    34. Nikolopoulos, K. & Goodwin, P. & Patelis, A. & Assimakopoulos, V., 2007. "Forecasting with cue information: A comparison of multiple regression with alternative forecasting approaches," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 180(1), pages 354-368, July.
    35. Adya, Monica & Collopy, Fred & Armstrong, J. Scott & Kennedy, Miles, 2001. "Automatic identification of time series features for rule-based forecasting," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 143-157.
    36. Kourentzes, Nikolaos & Petropoulos, Fotios & Trapero, Juan R., 2014. "Improving forecasting by estimating time series structural components across multiple frequencies," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 291-302.
    37. Teunter, Ruud H. & Syntetos, Aris A. & Zied Babai, M., 2011. "Intermittent demand: Linking forecasting to inventory obsolescence," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 214(3), pages 606-615, November.
    38. Luis A. Gil-Alana & Juncal Cunado & Fernando Perez de Gracia, 2008. "Tourism in the Canary Islands: forecasting using several seasonal time series models," Journal of Forecasting, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(7), pages 621-636.
    39. Adya, Monica & Armstrong, J. Scott & Collopy, Fred & Kennedy, Miles, 2000. "An application of rule-based forecasting to a situation lacking domain knowledge," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 477-484.
    40. Jose, Victor Richmond R. & Winkler, Robert L., 2008. "Simple robust averages of forecasts: Some empirical results," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 163-169.
    41. Bacchetti, Andrea & Saccani, Nicola, 2012. "Spare parts classification and demand forecasting for stock control: Investigating the gap between research and practice," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 722-737.
    42. Kolassa, Stephan, 2011. "Combining exponential smoothing forecasts using Akaike weights," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 238-251.
    43. Babai, M. Zied & Ali, Mohammad M. & Nikolopoulos, Konstantinos, 2012. "Impact of temporal aggregation on stock control performance of intermittent demand estimators: Empirical analysis," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 713-721.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Kang, Yanfei & Spiliotis, Evangelos & Petropoulos, Fotios & Athiniotis, Nikolaos & Li, Feng & Assimakopoulos, Vassilios, 2021. "Déjà vu: A data-centric forecasting approach through time series cross-similarity," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 132(C), pages 719-731.
    2. Makridakis, Spyros & Hyndman, Rob J. & Petropoulos, Fotios, 2020. "Forecasting in social settings: The state of the art," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 15-28.
    3. Kourentzes, Nikolaos & Petropoulos, Fotios & Trapero, Juan R., 2014. "Improving forecasting by estimating time series structural components across multiple frequencies," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 291-302.
    4. Makridakis, Spyros & Spiliotis, Evangelos & Assimakopoulos, Vassilios, 2020. "The M4 Competition: 100,000 time series and 61 forecasting methods," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 54-74.
    5. Gardner, Everette Jr., 2006. "Exponential smoothing: The state of the art--Part II," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 637-666.
    6. Jan G. De Gooijer & Rob J. Hyndman, 2005. "25 Years of IIF Time Series Forecasting: A Selective Review," Monash Econometrics and Business Statistics Working Papers 12/05, Monash University, Department of Econometrics and Business Statistics.
    7. De Gooijer, Jan G. & Hyndman, Rob J., 2006. "25 years of time series forecasting," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 443-473.
    8. Tine Van Calster & Filip Van den Bossche & Bart Baesens & Wilfried Lemahieu, 2020. "Profit-oriented sales forecasting: a comparison of forecasting techniques from a business perspective," Papers 2002.00949, arXiv.org.
    9. Svetunkov, Ivan & Kourentzes, Nikolaos, 2015. "Complex Exponential Smoothing," MPRA Paper 69394, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    10. Crone, Sven F. & Hibon, Michèle & Nikolopoulos, Konstantinos, 2011. "Advances in forecasting with neural networks? Empirical evidence from the NN3 competition on time series prediction," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 635-660.
    11. Fildes, Robert & Petropoulos, Fotios, 2015. "Simple versus complex selection rules for forecasting many time series," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 68(8), pages 1692-1701.
    12. Theodosiou, Marina, 2011. "Forecasting monthly and quarterly time series using STL decomposition," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 1178-1195, October.
    13. Fotios Petropoulos & Evangelos Spiliotis, 2021. "The Wisdom of the Data: Getting the Most Out of Univariate Time Series Forecasting," Forecasting, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 3(3), pages 1-20, June.
    14. Athanasopoulos, George & Hyndman, Rob J. & Kourentzes, Nikolaos & Petropoulos, Fotios, 2017. "Forecasting with temporal hierarchies," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 262(1), pages 60-74.
    15. R Fildes & K Nikolopoulos & S F Crone & A A Syntetos, 2008. "Forecasting and operational research: a review," Journal of the Operational Research Society, Palgrave Macmillan;The OR Society, vol. 59(9), pages 1150-1172, September.
    16. Petropoulos, Fotios & Wang, Xun & Disney, Stephen M., 2019. "The inventory performance of forecasting methods: Evidence from the M3 competition data," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 251-265.
    17. Fildes, Robert & Petropoulos, Fotios, 2013. "An evaluation of simple forecasting model selection rules," MPRA Paper 51772, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    18. Jaganathan, Srihari & Prakash, P.K.S., 2020. "A combination-based forecasting method for the M4-competition," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 98-104.
    19. Nikolopoulos, Konstantinos, 2021. "We need to talk about intermittent demand forecasting," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 291(2), pages 549-559.
    20. Li, Chongshou & Lim, Andrew, 2018. "A greedy aggregation–decomposition method for intermittent demand forecasting in fashion retailing," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 269(3), pages 860-869.

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:ejores:v:237:y:2014:i:1:p:152-163. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eor .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Catherine Liu (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eor .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.