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Financial Conditions Index: Early and Leading Indicator for Colombia?

  • Esteban Gómez


  • Andrés Murcia Pabón


  • Nancy Zamudio Gómez


This paper is an attempt at constructing a simple and effective macroprudential tool for policymakers. By integrating the joint occurrences of the main financial markets in Colombia into a single Financial Conditions Index (FCI), we hope to synthesize the information embedded in them regarding possible future economic outcomes. To do this, we use monthly data on 21 variables for the period comprised between July, 1991 - June, 2010 and apply PCA on their correlation matrix. On the one hand, we evaluate the predictive capacity of the FCI in forecasting GDP growth at different time horizons and find that it performs better as a leading indicator of real activity than other individual financial variables and an autoregressive model of GDP growth. Additionally, we are interested in testing the FCI’s long-term capability to correctly anticipate periods of distress in the economy, and find that the index could be used as an effective early-warning indicator. Hence, our FCI seems to represent a useful instrument for both financial stability and macroprudential supervision purposes.

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Paper provided by Banco de la Republica de Colombia in its series Temas de Estabilidad Financiera with number 055.

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Handle: RePEc:bdr:temest:055
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  1. Ben S. Bernanke & Mark Gertler, 1995. "Inside the Black Box: The Credit Channel of Monetary Policy Transmission," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(4), pages 27-48, Fall.
  2. Humberto Bernal Castro & ByronOrtega Gaitán, 2004. "¿Se ha desarrollado el mercado secundario de acciones colombiano durante el período 1988-2002?," DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO UEC 003832, UNIVERSIDAD EXTERNADO DE COLOMBIA.
  3. Esteban Gómez & Sandra Rozo, 2008. "Beyond Bubbles: The Role of Asset Prices in Early-Warning Indicators," ENSAYOS SOBRE POLÍTICA ECONÓMICA, BANCO DE LA REPÚBLICA - ESPE, June.
  4. Alberto Montagnoli & Oreste Napolitano, 2004. "Financial Condition Index and interest rate settings: a comparative analysis," Money Macro and Finance (MMF) Research Group Conference 2004 1, Money Macro and Finance Research Group.
  5. Leonardo Villar Gómez & David M. Salamanca Rojas & Andrés Murcia Pabón, . "Crédito, Represión Financiera y Flujos de Capitales en Colombia 1974-2003," Borradores de Economia 322, Banco de la Republica de Colombia.
  6. Breitung, Jörg & Eickmeier, Sandra, 2005. "Dynamic factor models," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2005,38, Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre.
  7. Kari H. Eika & Neil R. Ericsson & Ragnar Nymoen, 1996. "Hazards in implementing a monetary conditions index," International Finance Discussion Papers 568, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  8. Ben Bernanke & Mark Gertler & Simon Gilchrist, 1998. "The Financial Accelerator in a Quantitative Business Cycle Framework," NBER Working Papers 6455, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Mayes, David G. & Viren , Matti, 2002. "Financial Conditions Indexes," Economia Internazionale / International Economics, Camera di Commercio di Genova, vol. 55(4), pages 521-550.
  10. Jan Hatzius & Peter Hooper & Frederic S. Mishkin & Kermit L. Schoenholtz & Mark W. Watson, 2010. "Financial Conditions Indexes: A Fresh Look after the Financial Crisis," NBER Working Papers 16150, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Sandra Eickmeier & Christina Ziegler, 2008. "How successful are dynamic factor models at forecasting output and inflation? A meta-analytic approach," Journal of Forecasting, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(3), pages 237-265.
  12. Stock, James H & Watson, Mark W, 2002. "Macroeconomic Forecasting Using Diffusion Indexes," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(2), pages 147-62, April.
  13. Stéphanie Guichard & David Turner, 2008. "Quantifying the Effect of Financial Conditions on US Activity," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 635, OECD Publishing.
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