IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Forecasting the end of the global recession: did we miss the early signs?


  • Adriana Fernandez
  • Alex Nikolsko-Rzhevskyy


This paper looks at the term-structure literature to identify early signs predicting recessionary patterns in the U.S. and other developed economies. Based on the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) and Economic Cycle Research Institute (ECRI) recession dates, we define the probability of recession as a function of the traditional yield spread, plus a forward-looking measure of growth expectations, namely the output gap growth spread. For other countries, we extend the model and make it additionally dependent on the probability of recession in the U.S. Our results indicate that most of the a-posteriori official recession dates could have been forecast as early as April 2009, when the first green shoots of recovery appeared in the U.S. data. Overall, the term-structure versions we apply allow us to signal recessions earlier and more accurately than traditional term-structure models and most professional forecasters.

Suggested Citation

  • Adriana Fernandez & Alex Nikolsko-Rzhevskyy, 2011. "Forecasting the end of the global recession: did we miss the early signs?," Staff Papers, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, issue Apr.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:feddst:y:2011:i:apr:n:12

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Orphanides, Athanasios & van Norden, Simon, 2005. "The Reliability of Inflation Forecasts Based on Output Gap Estimates in Real Time," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 37(3), pages 583-601, June.
    2. Arturo Estrella & Anthony P. Rodrigues & Sebastian Schich, 2003. "How Stable is the Predictive Power of the Yield Curve? Evidence from Germany and the United States," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(3), pages 629-644, August.
    3. Evan F. Koenig & Kenneth M. Emery, 1991. "Misleading indicators? Using the composite leading indicators to predict cyclical turning points," Economic and Financial Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, issue Jul, pages 1-14.
    4. Michael J. Dueker, 1997. "Strengthening the case for the yield curve as a predictor of U.S. recessions," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Mar, pages 41-51.
    5. Diebold, Francis X. & Rudebusch, Glenn D. & Borag[caron]an Aruoba, S., 2006. "The macroeconomy and the yield curve: a dynamic latent factor approach," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 131(1-2), pages 309-338.
    6. Sharon Kozicki, 1997. "Predicting real growth and inflation with the yield spread," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, issue Q IV, pages 39-57.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    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:fip:feddst:y:2011:i:apr:n:12. 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: (Amy Chapman). General contact details of provider: .

    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 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.

    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.