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Forecasting Economic and Financial Variables with Global VARs

  • M. Hashem Pesaran
  • Til Schuermann
  • L. Vanessa Smith

This paper considers the problem of forecasting real and financial macroeconomic variables across a large number of countries in the global economy. To this end a global vector autoregressive (GVAR) model previously estimated over the 1979Q1-2003Q4 period by Dees, de Mauro, Pesaran, and Smith (2007), is used to generate out-of-sample one quarter and four quarters ahead forecasts of real output, inflation, real equity prices, exchange rates and interest rates over the period 2004Q1-2005Q4. Forecasts are obtained for 134 variables from 26 regions made up of 33 countries covering about 90% of world output. The forecasts are compared to typical benchmarks: univariate autoregressive and random walk models. Building on the forecast combination literature, the effects of model and estimation uncertainty on forecast outcomes are examined by pooling forecasts obtained from different GVAR models estimated over alternative sample periods. Given the size of the modeling problem, and the heterogeneity of economies considered — industrialised, emerging, and less developed countries — as well as the very real likelihood of possibly multiple structural breaks, averaging forecasts across both models and windows makes a significant difference. Indeed the double-averaged GVAR forecasts performed better than the benchmark competitors, especially for output, inflation and real equity prices.

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File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2008/wp-cesifo-2008-03/cesifo1_wp2263.pdf
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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 2263.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2263
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  1. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 1994. "Evidence on structural instability in macroeconomic times series relations," Working Paper Series, Macroeconomic Issues 94-13, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  2. Marco Aiolfi & Carlos Capistrán & Allan Timmermann, 2010. "Forecast Combinations," CREATES Research Papers 2010-21, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
  3. Dées, Stéphane & di Mauro, Filippo & Pesaran, Hashem & Smith, Vanessa, 2005. "Exploring the international linkages of the euro area: a global VAR analysis," Working Paper Series 0568, European Central Bank.
  4. M. Hashem Pesaran & Andreas Pick, 2009. "Forecasting Random Walks under Drift Instability," DNB Working Papers 207, Netherlands Central Bank, Research Department.
  5. Garcia, R. & Perron, P., 1994. "An Analysis of the Real Interest rate Under Regime Shifts," Cahiers de recherche 9428, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
  6. Hamilton, James Douglas & Kim, Dong Heon, 2000. "A Re-examination of the Predictability of Economic Activity Using the Yield Spread," University of California at San Diego, Economics Working Paper Series qt69v8p1m9, Department of Economics, UC San Diego.
  7. Glenn D. Rudebusch & Brian P. Sack & Eric T. Swanson, 2007. "Macroeconomic implications of changes in the term premium," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jul, pages 241-270.
  8. 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.
  9. Diebold, Francis X. & Rudebusch, Glenn D. & Borag[caron]an Aruoba, S., 2006. "The macroeconomy and the yield curve: a dynamic latent factor approach," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 131(1-2), pages 309-338.
  10. Mackinnon, J.G. & Haug, A.A. & Michelis, L., 1996. "Numerical Distribution Functions of Likelihood Ratio Tests for Cointegration," G.R.E.Q.A.M. 96a09, Universite Aix-Marseille III.
  11. M. Hashem Pesaran & Til Schuermann & Scott M. Weiner, 2002. "Modeling Regional Interdependencies Using a Global Error-Correcting Macroeconometric Model," Center for Financial Institutions Working Papers 01-38, Wharton School Center for Financial Institutions, University of Pennsylvania.
  12. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 2007. "Why Has U.S. Inflation Become Harder to Forecast?," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 39(s1), pages 3-33, 02.
  13. Carlo Favero & Iryna Kaminska & Ulf Soderstrom, 2005. "The Predictive Power of the Yield Spread: Further Evidence and a Structural Interpretation," Working Papers 280, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  14. Alexander Chudik & M. Hashem Pesaran & Elisa Tosetti, 2011. "Weak and strong cross‐section dependence and estimation of large panels," Econometrics Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 14(1), pages C45-C90, February.
  15. Katrin Assenmacher-Wesche & M. Hashem Pesaran, 2008. "Forecasting the Swiss Economy Using VECX* Models: An Exercise in Forecast Combination Across Modelsand Observation Windows," Working Papers 2008-03, Swiss National Bank.
  16. Chudik , A. & Pesaran, M.H., 2007. "Infinite Dimensional VARs and Factor Models," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 0757, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  17. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 2007. "Erratum to "Why Has U.S. Inflation Become Harder to Forecast?"," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 39(7), pages 1849-1849, October.
  18. Clements, Michael P. & Hendry, David F., 2006. "Forecasting with Breaks," Handbook of Economic Forecasting, Elsevier.
  19. Francis X. Diebold & Robert S. Mariano, 1994. "Comparing Predictive Accuracy," NBER Technical Working Papers 0169, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Mohammad Hashem Pesaran & Richard J Smith & Yongcheol Shin, 1999. "Structural analysis of vector error correction models with exogenous I(1) variables," ESE Discussion Papers 38, Edinburgh School of Economics, University of Edinburgh.
  21. Clements,Michael & Hendry,David, 1998. "Forecasting Economic Time Series," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521634809, June.
  22. Schorfheide, Frank, 2000. "Forecasting Economic Time Series," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 16(03), pages 441-450, June.
  23. Pesaran, Mohammad Hashem & Holly, Sean & Dees, Stephane & Smith, L. Vanessa, 2007. "Long Run Macroeconomic Relations in the Global Economy," Economics Discussion Papers 2007-7, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  24. Andrew Atkeson & Lee E. Ohanian, 2001. "Are Phillips curves useful for forecasting inflation?," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Win, pages 2-11.
  25. Pesaran, M. Hashem & Timmermann, Allan, 2007. "Selection of estimation window in the presence of breaks," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 137(1), pages 134-161, March.
  26. Alogoskoufis, George & Smith, Ron, 1991. " On Error Correction Models: Specification, Interpretation, Estimation," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 5(1), pages 97-128.
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