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Asymmetry in unemployment rate forecast errors

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  • Galbraith, John W.
  • van Norden, Simon

Abstract

Asymmetries in unemployment dynamics have been observed in the time series of a number of countries, including the United States. This paper studies asymmetries in unemployment rate forecast errors. We consider conditions under which optimal forecasts will display asymmetrically-distributed errors and how the degree of asymmetry might vary with the forecast horizon. Using data from the U.S. Survey of Professional Forecasters and the Federal Reserve Greenbook, we find substantial evidence of forecast error asymmetry, which tends to increase with the forecast horizon; we also find noteworthy differences in forecasts from these two sources. The results give insight into the abilities of professional forecasters to adapt their forecasts to asymmetry in underlying processes.

Suggested Citation

  • Galbraith, John W. & van Norden, Simon, 2019. "Asymmetry in unemployment rate forecast errors," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 35(4), pages 1613-1626.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:intfor:v:35:y:2019:i:4:p:1613-1626
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ijforecast.2018.11.006
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

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    2. Andrea Carriero & Todd E. Clark & Massimiliano Marcellino, 2020. "Capturing Macroeconomic Tail Risks with Bayesian Vector Autoregressions," Working Papers 20-02R, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, revised 22 Sep 2020.
    3. Todd E. Clark & Florian Huber & Gary Koop & Massimiliano Marcellino & Michael Pfarrhofer, 2021. "Investigating Growth at Risk Using a Multi-country Non-parametric Quantile Factor Model," Papers 2110.03411, arXiv.org.
    4. Tanujit Chakraborty & Ashis Kumar Chakraborty & Munmun Biswas & Sayak Banerjee & Shramana Bhattacharya, 2021. "Unemployment Rate Forecasting: A Hybrid Approach," Computational Economics, Springer;Society for Computational Economics, vol. 57(1), pages 183-201, January.
    5. Tamás Kiss & Stepan Mazur & Hoang Nguyen & Pär Österholm, 2023. "Modeling the relation between the US real economy and the corporate bond‐yield spread in Bayesian VARs with non‐Gaussian innovations," Journal of Forecasting, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 42(2), pages 347-368, March.
    6. Todd E. Clark & Florian Huber & Gary Koop & Massimiliano Marcellino & Michael Pfarrhofer, 2023. "Tail Forecasting With Multivariate Bayesian Additive Regression Trees," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 64(3), pages 979-1022, August.
    7. Ovidiu BUZOIANU & Amelia DIACONU & Marcela Antoaneta NICULESCU & Silviu DIACONU, 2020. "Analysis Of The Economic And Social Effects Of Unemployment In Romania," Proceedings of the INTERNATIONAL MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE, Faculty of Management, Academy of Economic Studies, Bucharest, Romania, vol. 14(1), pages 705-711, November.
    8. Bas Scheer, 2022. "Addressing Unemployment Rate Forecast Errors in Relation to the Business Cycle," CPB Discussion Paper 434, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
    9. Pfarrhofer, Michael, 2022. "Modeling tail risks of inflation using unobserved component quantile regressions," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 143(C).
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    11. Muneeb Ahmad & Yousaf Ali Khan & Chonghui Jiang & Syed Jawad Haider Kazmi & Syed Zaheer Abbas, 2023. "The impact of COVID‐19 on unemployment rate: An intelligent based unemployment rate prediction in selected countries of Europe," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 28(1), pages 528-543, January.

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