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Predicting U.S. Recessions: Financial Variables As Leading Indicators

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  • Arturo Estrella
  • Frederic S. Mishkin

Abstract

This paper examines the out-of-sample performance of various financial variables as predictors of U.S. recessions. Series such as interest rates and spreads, stock prices, and monetary aggregates are evaluated individually and in comparison with other financial and nonfinancial indicators. The analysis focuses on out-of-sample performance from one to eight quarters ahead. Results show that stock prices are useful with one- to three-quarter horizons, as are some well-known macroeconomic indicators. Beyond one quarter, however, the slope of the yield curve emerges as the clear individual choice and typically performs better by itself out of sample than in conjunction with other variables. © 1998 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Suggested Citation

  • Arturo Estrella & Frederic S. Mishkin, 1998. "Predicting U.S. Recessions: Financial Variables As Leading Indicators," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(1), pages 45-61, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:80:y:1998:i:1:p:45-61
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    JEL classification:

    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods

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