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A three-frequency dynamic factor model for nowcasting Canadian provincial GDP growth

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  • Chernis, Tony
  • Cheung, Calista
  • Velasco, Gabriella

Abstract

This paper estimates a three-frequency dynamic factor model for nowcasting the Canadian provincial gross domestic product (GDP). The Canadian provincial GDP at market prices is released by Statistics Canada annually with a significant lag (11 months). This necessitates a mixed-frequency approach that can process timely monthly data, the quarterly national accounts, and the annual target variable. The model is estimated on a wide set of provincial, national and international data. In a pseudo real-time exercise, we find that the model outperforms simple benchmarks and is competitive with more sophisticated mixed-frequency approaches (MIDAS models). We also find that variables from the Labour Force Survey are important predictors of real activity. This paper expands previous work that has documented the importance of foreign variables for nowcasting Canadian GDP. This paper finds that including national and foreign predictors is useful for Ontario, while worsening the nowcast performance for smaller provinces.

Suggested Citation

  • Chernis, Tony & Cheung, Calista & Velasco, Gabriella, 2020. "A three-frequency dynamic factor model for nowcasting Canadian provincial GDP growth," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 851-872.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:intfor:v:36:y:2020:i:3:p:851-872
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ijforecast.2019.09.006
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    3. Alexander Semin & Marina Vasiljeva & Alexander Sokolov & Nikolay Kuznetsov & Maksim Maramygin & Maria Volkova & Angelina Zekiy & Izabella Elyakova & Natalya Nikitina, 2020. "Improving Early Warning System Indicators for Crisis Manifestations in the Russian Economy," Journal of Open Innovation: Technology, Market, and Complexity, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 6(4), pages 1-21, November.
    4. Stankevich, Ivan, 2020. "Comparison of macroeconomic indicators nowcasting methods: Russian GDP case," Applied Econometrics, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA), vol. 59, pages 113-127.
    5. Christian Glocker & Philipp Wegmueller, 2020. "Business cycle dating and forecasting with real-time Swiss GDP data," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 58(1), pages 73-105, January.
    6. Chernis, Tony & Cheung, Calista & Velasco, Gabriella, 2020. "A three-frequency dynamic factor model for nowcasting Canadian provincial GDP growth," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 851-872.
    7. Sarah Miller & David Amirault & Laurent Martin, 2017. "What’s Up with Unit Non-Response in the Bank of Canada’s Business Outlook Survey? The Effect of Staff Tenure," Discussion Papers 17-11, Bank of Canada.
    8. James Chapman & Ajit Desai, 2021. "Using Payments Data to Nowcast Macroeconomic Variables During the Onset of COVID-19," Staff Working Papers 21-2, Bank of Canada.
    9. Evžen Kočenda & Karen Poghosyan, 2020. "Nowcasting Real GDP Growth: Comparison between Old and New EU Countries," Eastern European Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 58(3), pages 197-220, May.
    10. Kevin Moran & Simplice Aimé Nono & Imad Rherrad, 2018. "Forecasting with Many Predictors: How Useful are National and International Confidence Data?," Cahiers de recherche 1814, Centre de recherche sur les risques, les enjeux économiques, et les politiques publiques.
    11. Tony Chernis & Rodrigo Sekkel, 2018. "Nowcasting Canadian Economic Activity in an Uncertain Environment," Discussion Papers 18-9, Bank of Canada.
    12. Danilo Leiva-Leon & Gabriel Perez-Quiros & Eyno Rots, 2020. "Real-time weakness of the global economy: a first assessment of the coronavirus crisis," Working Papers 2015, Banco de España.
    13. María Gil & Danilo Leiva-Leon & Javier J. Pérez & Alberto Urtasun, 2019. "An application of dynamic factor models to nowcast regional economic activity in Spain," Occasional Papers 1904, Banco de España.
    14. Shafiullah Qureshi & Ba M Chu & Fanny S. Demers, 2020. "Forecasting Canadian GDP growth using XGBoost," Carleton Economic Papers 20-14, Carleton University, Department of Economics, revised 24 Aug 2020.
    15. González-Astudillo, Manuel & Baquero, Daniel, 2019. "A nowcasting model for Ecuador: Implementing a time-varying mean output growth," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 82(C), pages 250-263.
    16. Philipp Wegmüller & Christian Glocker & Valentino Guggia, 2021. "Weekly Economic Activity: Measurement and Informational Content," WIFO Working Papers 627, WIFO.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Regional forecasting; Econometric models; Macroeconomic forecasting; Time series; Comparative studies;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E37 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications
    • R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes

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