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Combining inflation density forecasts

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Abstract

In this paper, we empirically evaluate competing approaches for combining inflation density forecasts in terms of Kullback-Leibler divergence. In particular, we apply a similar suite of models to four different data sets and aim at identifying combination methods that perform well throughout different series and variations of the model suite. We pool individual densities using linear and logarithmic combination methods. The suite consists of linear forecasting models with moving estimation windows to account for structural change. We find that combining densities is a much better strategy than selecting a particular model ex-ante. While combinations do not always perform better than the best individual model, combinations always yield accurate forecasts and, as we show analytically, provide insurance against selecting inappropriate models. Combining with equal weights often outperforms other weighting schemes. Also, logarithmic combinations can be advantageous, in particular if symmetric densities are preferred.

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  • Christian Kascha & Francesco Ravazzolo, 2008. "Combining inflation density forecasts," Working Paper 2008/22, Norges Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:bno:worpap:2008_22
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    File URL: http://www.norges-bank.no/en/Published/Papers/Working-Papers/2008/WP-200822/
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    Keywords

    Forecast Combination; Logarithmic Combinations; Density Forecasts; Inflation Forecasting;

    JEL classification:

    • C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods
    • E37 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications

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