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Forecasting Canadian GDP: Region-Specific versus Countrywide Information

  • Frédérick Demers
  • David Dupuis

The authors investigate whether the aggregation of region-specific forecasts improves upon the direct forecasting of Canadian GDP growth. They follow Marcellino, Stock, and Watson (2003) and use disaggregate information to predict aggregate GDP growth. An array of multivariate forecasting models are considered for five Canadian regions, and single-equation models are considered for direct forecasting of Canadian GDP. The authors focus on forecasts at 1-, 2-, 4-, and 8-quarter horizons, which best represent the monetary policy transmission framework of long and variable lags. Region-specific forecasts are aggregated to the country level and tested against aggregate country-level forecasts. The empirical results show that Canadian GDP growth forecasts can be improved by indirectly forecasting the GDP growth of the Canadian economic regions using a multivariate approach, namely a vector autoregression and moving average with exogenous regressors (VARMAX) model.

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Paper provided by Bank of Canada in its series Staff Working Papers with number 05-31.

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Length: 40 pages
Date of creation: 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bca:bocawp:05-31
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  1. Diebold, Francis X & Mariano, Roberto S, 1995. "Comparing Predictive Accuracy," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 13(3), pages 253-63, July.
  2. Marcellino, Massimiliano & Stock, James H. & Watson, Mark W., 2003. "Macroeconomic forecasting in the Euro area: Country specific versus area-wide information," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 1-18, February.
  3. Clive W. J. Granger, 1988. "Aggregation of time series variables-a survey," Discussion Paper / Institute for Empirical Macroeconomics 1, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  4. Meese, Richard A. & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1983. "Empirical exchange rate models of the seventies : Do they fit out of sample?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(1-2), pages 3-24, February.
  5. Tobias, Justin & Zellner, Arnold, 2000. "A Note on Aggregation, Disaggregation and Forecasting Performance," Staff General Research Papers Archive 12024, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  6. Michel Beine & Serge Coulombe, 2003. "Regional perspectives on dollarization in Canada," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/10433, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  7. Marc Hallin & Zudi Lu & Lanh T. Tran, 2004. "Local linear spatial regression," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/2131, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  8. Giacomini, Raffaella & Granger, Clive W.J., 2001. "Aggregationn of Space-Time Processes," University of California at San Diego, Economics Working Paper Series qt77f76455, Department of Economics, UC San Diego.
  9. Francis X. Diebold & Glenn D. Rudebusch, 1999. "Business Cycles: Durations, Dynamics, and Forecasting," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 6636, 01-2013.
  10. Bayoumi, Tamim & Eichengreen, Barry, 1994. "Monetary and exchange rate arrangements for NAFTA," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 125-165, February.
  11. Alain DeSerres & Rene Lalonde, 1995. "Symetrie des chocs touchant les regions canadiennes et choix d'un regime de change," Macroeconomics 9502001, EconWPA.
  12. Frédérick Demers & Annie De Champlain, 2005. "Forecasting Core Inflation in Canada: Should We Forecast the Aggregate or the Components?," Staff Working Papers 05-44, Bank of Canada.
  13. Donald W.K. Andrews, 1988. "Heteroskedasticity and Autocorrelation Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimation," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 877R, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University, revised Jul 1989.
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