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Forecasting recessions: can we do better on MARS?

  • Peter Sephton

A number of recent articles have examined the ability of financial variables to predict recessions. In this article, Peter Sephton extends the literature by considering a non-linear, nonparametric approach to predicting the probability of recession using multivariate adaptive regression splines (MARS). The results suggest that this data-intensive approach to modeling is not a panacea for recession forecasting. Although it does well explaining the data within the sample, its out-of-sample forecasts do not improve upon the benchmark probit specification.

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Article provided by Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis in its journal Review.

Volume (Year): (2001)
Issue (Month): Mar ()
Pages: 39-49

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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedlrv:y:2001:i:mar:p:39-49:n:v.83no.2
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  1. Granger, Clive W J, 1995. "Modelling Nonlinear Relationships between Extended-Memory Variables," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(2), pages 265-79, March.
  2. Enders, Walter & Granger, C. W. J., 1998. "Unit Root Tests and Asymmetric Adjustment with an Example Using the Term Structure of Interest Rates," Staff General Research Papers 1388, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  3. Fernando Fernández-Rodríguez & Simón Sosvilla-Rivero & Julián Andrada, . "Exchange-rate forecasts with simultaneous nearest-neighbour methods: Evidence from the EMS," Working Papers 98-17, FEDEA.
  4. Michael 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. Benjamin M. Friedman & Kenneth N. Kuttner, 1998. "Indicator Properties Of The Paper-Bill Spread: Lessons From Recent Experience," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(1), pages 34-44, February.
  6. Bernard, Henri J & Gerlach, Stefan, 1998. "Does the Term Structure Predict Recessions? The International Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 1892, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Cao, Liangyue & Soofi, Abdol S., 1999. "Nonlinear deterministic forecasting of daily dollar exchange rates," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 421-430, October.
  8. Atta-Mensah, Joseph & Tkacz, Greg, 1998. "Predicting Canadian Recessions Using Financial Variables: A Probit Approach," Working Papers 98-5, Bank of Canada.
  9. De Gooijer, Jan G. & Ray, Bonnie K. & Krager, Horst, 1998. "Forecasting exchange rates using TSMARS," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 513-534, June.
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