IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ces/ceswps/_4176.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Firms' Optimism and Pessimism

Author

Listed:
  • Ruediger Bachmann
  • Steffen Elstner

Abstract

Are firms’ expectations systematically too optimistic or too pessimistic? Does it matter? We use micro data from the West German manufacturing subset of the IFO Business Climate Survey to infer quarterly production changes at the firm level and combine them with production expectations over a quarterly horizon in the same survey to construct series of quantitative firm-specific expectation errors. We find that depending on the details of the empirical strategy at least 6 percent and at most 34 percent of firms systematically over- or underpredict their one-quarter-ahead upcoming production. In a simple neoclassical heterogeneous-firm model these expectational biases lead to factor misallocations that cause welfare losses which in the worst case are comparable to conventional estimates of the welfare costs of business cycles fluctuations. In more conservative calibrations the welfare losses are even smaller.

Suggested Citation

  • Ruediger Bachmann & Steffen Elstner, 2013. "Firms' Optimism and Pessimism," CESifo Working Paper Series 4176, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_4176
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/DocDL/cesifo1_wp4176.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Nir Jaimovich & Sergio Rebelo, 2007. "Behavioral Theories of the Business Cycle," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 5(2-3), pages 361-368, 04-05.
    2. Tarek A. Hassan & Thomas M. Mertens, 2017. "The Social Cost of Near-Rational Investment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 107(4), pages 1059-1103, April.
    3. Markus K. Brunnermeier & Jonathan A. Parker, 2005. "Optimal Expectations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1092-1118, September.
    4. R?diger Bachmann & Steffen Elstner & Eric R. Sims, 2013. "Uncertainty and Economic Activity: Evidence from Business Survey Data," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(2), pages 217-249, April.
    5. Nicola Gennaioli & Yueran Ma & Andrei Shleifer, 2016. "Expectations and Investment," NBER Macroeconomics Annual, University of Chicago Press, vol. 30(1), pages 379-431.
      • Nicola Gennaioli & Yueran Ma & Andrei Shleifer, 2015. "Expectations and Investment," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2015, Volume 30, pages 379-431 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Pesaran, M. Hashem & Weale, Martin, 2006. "Survey Expectations," Handbook of Economic Forecasting, Elsevier.
    7. Ulrike Malmendier & Geoffrey Tate, 2005. "CEO Overconfidence and Corporate Investment," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(6), pages 2661-2700, December.
    8. Silvia Lui & James Mitchell & Martin Weale, 2011. "Qualitative business surveys: signal or noise?," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 174(2), pages 327-348, April.
    9. Bovi, Maurizio, 2009. "Economic versus psychological forecasting. Evidence from consumer confidence surveys," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 30(4), pages 563-574, August.
    10. Souleles, Nicholas S, 2004. "Expectations, Heterogeneous Forecast Errors, and Consumption: Micro Evidence from the Michigan Consumer Sentiment Surveys," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(1), pages 39-72, February.
    11. Steven J. Davis & John Haltiwanger, 1992. "Gross Job Creation, Gross Job Destruction, and Employment Reallocation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(3), pages 819-863.
    12. Sascha O. Becker & Klaus Wohlrabe, 2008. "European Data Watch: Micro Data at the Ifo Institute for Economic Research – The “Ifo Business Survey”, Usage and Access," Schmollers Jahrbuch : Journal of Applied Social Science Studies / Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 128(2), pages 307-319.
    13. Frank de Leeuw & Michael J. McKelvey, 1981. "Price Expectations of Business Firms," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 12(1), pages 299-314.
    14. Itzhak Ben-David & John R. Graham, 2013. "Managerial Miscalibration," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 128(4), pages 1547-1584.
    15. Nerlove, Marc, 1983. "Expectations, Plans, and Realizations in Theory and Practice," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(5), pages 1251-1279, September.
    16. Brown, Philip & Clarke, Alex & How, Janice C. Y. & Lim, Kadir, 2000. "The accuracy of management dividend forecasts in Australia," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 8(3-4), pages 309-331, July.
    17. repec:hrv:faseco:32193497 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Christian Mueller & Eva M. Koeberl, 2007. "The Speed of Adjustment to Demand Shocks: A Markov-chain Measurement Using Micro Panel Data," KOF Working papers 07-170, KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich.
    19. Rüdiger Bachmann & Christian Bayer, 2011. "Uncertainty Business Cycles - Really?," NBER Working Papers 16862, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    20. Bachmann, Rüdiger & Bayer, Christian, 2013. "‘Wait-and-See’ business cycles?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(6), pages 704-719.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Anja Kukuvec & Harald Oberhofer, 2018. "The Propagation of Business Sentiment within the European Union?," WIFO Working Papers 549, WIFO.
    2. Buchholz, Manuel & Tonzer, Lena & Berner, Julian, 2016. "Asymmetric Investment Responses to Firm-specific Uncertainty," IWH Discussion Papers 7/2016, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
    3. Bachmann, Rüdiger & Born, Benjamin & Elstner, Steffen & Grimme, Christian, 2013. "Time-Varying Business Volatility, Price Setting, and the Real Effects of Monetary Policy," CEPR Discussion Papers 9702, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Charles F. Manski, 2018. "Survey Measurement of Probabilistic Macroeconomic Expectations: Progress and Promise," NBER Macroeconomics Annual, University of Chicago Press, vol. 32(1), pages 411-471.
    5. repec:eee:jeborg:v:145:y:2018:i:c:p:66-79 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Sachverständigenrat zur Begutachtung der Gesamtwirtschaftlichen Entwicklung (ed.), 2015. "Zukunftsfähigkeit in den Mittelpunkt. Jahresgutachten 2015/16," Annual Economic Reports / Jahresgutachten, German Council of Economic Experts / Sachverständigenrat zur Begutachtung der gesamtwirtschaftlichen Entwicklung, volume 127, number 201516.
    7. Ambrocio, Gene, 2017. "The real effects of overconfidence and fundamental uncertainty shocks," Research Discussion Papers 37/2017, Bank of Finland.
    8. Maiko Koga & Haruko Kato, 2017. "Behavioral Biases in Firms' Growth Expectations," Bank of Japan Working Paper Series 17-E-9, Bank of Japan.
    9. Massenot, Baptiste & Pettinicchi, Yuri, 2018. "Can firms see into the future? Survey evidence from Germany," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 145(C), pages 66-79.
    10. Joel M. David & Venky Venkateswaran, 2017. "The Sources of Capital Misallocation," NBER Working Papers 23129, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. repec:wiw:wus005:6003 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Manuel Buchholz & Lena Tonzer & J. Berner, 2016. "Asymmetric Investment Responses to Firm-specific Uncertainty," IWH Discussion Papers 7, Halle Institute for Economic Research.
    13. Poutineau, Jean-Christophe & Vermandel, Gauthier, 2015. "Cross-border banking flows spillovers in the Eurozone: Evidence from an estimated DSGE model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 378-403.
    14. repec:wiw:wiwwuw:wuwp257 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. repec:zbw:iwhdps:7-16 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Pinto, Santiago & Sarte, Pierre-Daniel G. & Sharp, Robert, 2015. "Learning About Consumer Uncertainty from Qualitative Surveys: As Uncertain As Ever," Working Paper 15-9, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
    17. Lance Kent, 2015. "Relaxing Rational Expectations," Working Papers 159, Department of Economics, College of William and Mary.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    survey data; expectation errors; expectation biases; optimism; pessimism; firm data; heterogeneous firms;

    JEL classification:

    • D22 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Empirical Analysis
    • D84 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Expectations; Speculations
    • E20 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - General (includes Measurement and Data)
    • E22 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Investment; Capital; Intangible Capital; Capacity

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_4176. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Klaus Wohlrabe). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/cesifde.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.