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General Model-Based Filters for Extracting Cycles and Trends in Economic Time Series

Author

Listed:
  • Andrew C. Harvey

    (Faculty of Economics and Politics, Cambridge University)

  • Thomas M. Trimbur

    (Faculty of Economics and Politics, Cambridge University)

Abstract

A class of model-based filters for extracting trends and cycles in economic time series is presented. These lowpass and bandpass filters are derived in a mutually consistent manner as the joint solution to a signal extraction problem in an unobserved-components model. The resulting trends and cycles are computed in finite samples using the Kalman filter and associated smoother. The filters form a class which is a generalization of the class of Butterworth filters, widely used in engineering. They are very flexible and have the important property of allowing relatively smooth cycles to be extracted from economic time series. Perfectly sharp, or ideal, bandpass filters emerge as a limiting case. Applying the method to quarterly series on U.S. investment and GDP shows a clearly defined cycle. © 2003 President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrew C. Harvey & Thomas M. Trimbur, 2003. "General Model-Based Filters for Extracting Cycles and Trends in Economic Time Series," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(2), pages 244-255, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:85:y:2003:i:2:p:244-255
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Marianne Baxter & Robert G. King, 1999. "Measuring Business Cycles: Approximate Band-Pass Filters For Economic Time Series," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 81(4), pages 575-593, November.
    2. Lawrence J. Christiano & Terry J. Fitzgerald, 2003. "The Band Pass Filter," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 44(2), pages 435-465, May.
    3. Christian J. Murray, 2003. "Cyclical Properties of Baxter-King Filtered Time Series," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(2), pages 472-476, May.
    4. Luca Benati, 2001. "Band-pass filtering, cointegration, and business cycle analysis," Bank of England working papers 142, Bank of England.
    5. Koopman, Siem Jan & Harvey, Andrew, 2003. "Computing observation weights for signal extraction and filtering," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 27(7), pages 1317-1333, May.
    6. Hodrick, Robert J & Prescott, Edward C, 1997. "Postwar U.S. Business Cycles: An Empirical Investigation," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 29(1), pages 1-16, February.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C15 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Statistical Simulation Methods: General
    • C22 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes

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