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Forecasting inflation and growth: do private forecasts match those of policymakers?

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  • William T. Gavin
  • Rachel J. Mandal

Abstract

Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) projections are important because they provide information for evaluating current monetary policy intentions and because they indicate what FOMC members think will be the likely consequence of their policies. Knowing the Fed’s objectives, their forecasts, and recent deviations of the economy from the forecasts should be sufficient to understand how the Fed is making monetary policy. Results here show that the Blue Chip consensus forecasts are a good proxy for the FOMC views. For example, they match the policymakers’ views as closely as do the Board staff forecasts presented at FOMC meetings. Using alternative forms of the Taylor rule, the authors show that the Blue Chip consensus and the Fed policymakers’ forecasts have almost identical implications for the monetary policy process.

Suggested Citation

  • William T. Gavin & Rachel J. Mandal, 2001. "Forecasting inflation and growth: do private forecasts match those of policymakers?," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 11-20.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedlrv:y:2001:i:may:p:11-20:n:v.83no.3
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Capistrán, Carlos, 2008. "Bias in Federal Reserve inflation forecasts: Is the Federal Reserve irrational or just cautious?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(8), pages 1415-1427, November.
    2. Baghestani, Hamid, 2008. "Federal Reserve versus private information: Who is the best unemployment rate predictor," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 101-110.
    3. Paul Hubert, 2015. "Revisiting the Greenbook’s relative forecasting performance," Revue de l'OFCE, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 0(1), pages 151-179.
    4. Anderson, Richard G. & Hoffman, Dennis L. & Rasche, Robert H., 2002. "A vector error-correction forecasting model of the US economy," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 569-598, December.
    5. Baghestani, Hamid, 2011. "Federal Reserve and private forecasts of growth in investment," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 63(4), pages 290-305, July.
    6. Liu, Dandan & Smith, Julie K., 2014. "Inflation forecasts and core inflation measures: Where is the information on future inflation?," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 133-137.
    7. David L. Reifschneider & Peter Tulip, 2007. "Gauging the uncertainty of the economic outlook from historical forecasting errors," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2007-60, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    8. Travaglini, Guido, 2007. "The U.S. Dynamic Taylor Rule With Multiple Breaks, 1984-2001," MPRA Paper 3419, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 15 Jun 2007.
    9. Gavin, William T. & Mandal, Rachel J., 2003. "Evaluating FOMC forecasts," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 655-667.
    10. William T. Gavin & Geetanjali Pande, 2008. "FOMC consensus forecasts," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 149-164.
    11. Baghestani, Hamid & Khallaf, Ashraf, 2012. "Predictions of growth in U.S. corporate profits: Asymmetric vs. symmetric loss," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 222-229.
    12. Gamber, Edward N. & Smith, Julie K., 2009. "Are the Fed's inflation forecasts still superior to the private sector's?," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 240-251, June.
    13. Paul Hubert, 2015. "Do Central Bank Forecasts Influence Private Agents? Forecasting Performance versus Signals," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 47(4), pages 771-789, June.
    14. Hamid Baghestani, 2014. "On the loss structure of federal reserve forecasts of output growth," Journal of Economics and Finance, Springer;Academy of Economics and Finance, vol. 38(3), pages 518-527, July.
    15. Gamber, Edward N. & Hakes, David R., 2006. "The Taylor rule and the appointment cycle of the chairperson of the Federal Reserve," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 55-66.
    16. Edward N. Gamber & Julie K. Smith & Matthew Weiss, 2008. "Forecast Errors Before and After the Great Moderation," Working Papers 2008-001, The George Washington University, Department of Economics, Research Program on Forecasting, revised Mar 2009.
    17. David Reifschneider & Peter Tulip, 2017. "Gauging the Uncertainty of the Economic Outlook Using Historical Forecasting Errors: The Federal Reserve's Approach," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp2017-01, Reserve Bank of Australia.
    18. Paul Hubert, 2010. "Monetary Policy, Imperfect Information and the Expectations Channel," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/f4rshpf3v1u, Sciences Po.
    19. Kishor N. Kundan, 2010. "The Superiority of Greenbook Forecasts and the Role of Recessions," NBP Working Papers 74, Narodowy Bank Polski, Economic Research Department.
    20. repec:eee:ecanpo:v:54:y:2017:i:c:p:112-122 is not listed on IDEAS
    21. Baghestani, Hamid & AbuAl-Foul, Bassam M., 2017. "Comparing Federal Reserve, Blue Chip, and time series forecasts of US output growth," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 89(C), pages 47-56.
    22. Hamid Baghestani, 2009. "A Comparison of U.S. Housing Starts Forecasts," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 29(4), pages 2525-2530.
    23. Gamber, Edward N. & Smith, Julie K. & Weiss, Matthew A., 2011. "Forecast errors before and during the Great Moderation," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 63(4), pages 278-289, July.
    24. Tito Nícias Teixeira da Silva Filho, 2013. "Banks, Asset Management or Consultancies' Inflation Forecasts: is there a better forecaster out there?," Working Papers Series 310, Central Bank of Brazil, Research Department.
    25. Hamid Baghestani & Cassia Marchon, 2015. "On the accuracy of private forecasts of inflation and growth in Brazil," Journal of Economics and Finance, Springer;Academy of Economics and Finance, vol. 39(2), pages 370-381, April.

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