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New light on the 'impressionistic view' of the balancing item in Australia's balance of payments accounts

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  • Christis Tombazos

Abstract

Recently, Fausten and Brooks offered (what they refer to as) an 'impressionistic view' of the temporal evolution of Australia's balancing item, which is a measure of the accuracy of the balance of payments accounts. They claim that the balancing item 'has been increasing in magnitude and volatility, violating with increasing frequency internationally agreed acceptability criteria for smallness. In the present paper it is shown that Fausten and Brooks results derive from data that incorporates excessively a dynamically asymmetric concentration of revisions and is therefore unsuitable for statistical analysis. This paper develops, and empirically evaluates, a model of the process of revisions of balance of payments data. This model illustrates that dynamically inconsistent time series of the balancing item, such as that employed by Fausten and Brooks, are bound to generate an artificial impression that it follows an 'explosive' time trend. Subsequently, it is illustrated that when alternative, dynamically consistent editions of the balancing item data for the same period as that examined by Fausten and Brooks are employed, their results are reversed. Indeed, the findings here contradict diametrically the conclusions of these authors by suggesting that the decline in the frequency of balancing item 'violations' observed in the latter portion of the relevant time period is unparalleled in the history of the balance of payments accounts.

Suggested Citation

  • Christis Tombazos, 2003. "New light on the 'impressionistic view' of the balancing item in Australia's balance of payments accounts," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(12), pages 1369-1378.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:applec:v:35:y:2003:i:12:p:1369-1378
    DOI: 10.1080/0003684032000129354
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. David E. Runkle, 1998. "Revisionist history: how data revisions distort economic policy research," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Fall, pages 3-12.
    2. Croushore, Dean & Stark, Tom, 2001. "A real-time data set for macroeconomists," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 105(1), pages 111-130, November.
    3. Ghosh, Sucharita & Lien, Donald, 1995. "Data Revision and Market Response: The Case of United States Trade Balance Announcements," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 57(2), pages 265-275, May.
    4. Holden, Kenneth, 1969. "The Effect of Revisions to Data on Two Econometric Studies," The Manchester School of Economic & Social Studies, University of Manchester, vol. 37(1), pages 23-37, March.
    5. Ghosh, Sucharita, 1997. "United States Trade Balance Announcements: The Nature of Its Data Revisions," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 59(3), pages 371-383, August.
    6. Frederick Joutz & H. O. Stekler, 1998. "Data revisions and forecasting," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 30(8), pages 1011-1016.
    7. Robert Brooks & Gabrielle Berman & Sinclair Davidson, 1998. "The nature and extent of revisions to Australian macroeconomic data," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(3), pages 169-174.
    8. Patterson, K D, 1992. "Revisions to the Components of the Trade Balance for the United Kingdom," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 54(1), pages 103-120, February.
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    Cited by:

    1. Maria Siranova & Menbere Workie Tiruneh, 2016. "The determinants of errors and omissions in a small and open economy: The case of Slovakia," Working Papers wp73, Institute of Economic Research, SAS, revised 08 Apr 2016.
    2. T Tang, 2009. "Testing for Non-linearity in the Balancing Item of Balance of Payments Accounts: The Case of 20 Industrial Countries," Economic Issues Journal Articles, Economic Issues, vol. 14(2), pages 107-124, September.
    3. Tuck Cheong Tang, 2006. "Japan's balancing item: do timing errors matter?," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(2), pages 81-87.
    4. Tuck Cheong Tang & Evan Lau, 2008. "An Empirical Investigation On The Sustainability Of Balancing Item Of Balance Of Payment Accounts For Oic Member Countries," Monash Economics Working Papers 31/08, Monash University, Department of Economics.
    5. Tuck Cheong Tang, 2006. "The influences of economic openness on Japan's balancing item: an empirical note," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(1), pages 7-10.

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