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Forecast Comparisons in Unstable Environments

  • Giacomini, Raffaella
  • Rossi, Barbara

We propose new methods for comparing the relative out-of-sample forecasting performance of two competing models in the presence of possible instabilities. The main idea is to develop a measure of the relative ìlocal forecasting performanceî for the two models, and to investigate its stability over time by means of statistical tests. We propose two tests (the ìFluctuation testî and the test against a ìOne-time Reversalî) that analyze the evolution of the modelsí relative performance over historical samples. In contrast to previous approaches to forecast comparison, which are based on measures of ìglobal performanceî, we focus on the entire time path of the modelsí relative performance, which may contain useful information that is lost when looking for the model that forecasts best on average. We apply our tests to the analysis of the time variation in the out-of-sample forecasting performance of monetary models of exchange rate determination relative to the random walk.

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Paper provided by Duke University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 08-04.

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Length: 30 Pages
Date of creation: 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:duk:dukeec:08-4
Contact details of provider: Postal: Department of Economics Duke University 213 Social Sciences Building Box 90097 Durham, NC 27708-0097
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  1. Todd E. Clark & Michael McCracken, 1999. "Tests of Equal Forecast Accuracy and Encompassing for Nested Models," Computing in Economics and Finance 1999 1241, Society for Computational Economics.
  2. Todd E. Clark & Kenneth D. West, 2004. "Using out-of-sample mean squared prediction errors to test the Martingale difference hypothesis," Research Working Paper RWP 04-03, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
  3. Kilian, Lutz & Taylor, Mark P., 2003. "Why is it so difficult to beat the random walk forecast of exchange rates?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 85-107, May.
  4. Diebold, Francis X & Mariano, Roberto S, 2002. "Comparing Predictive Accuracy," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(1), pages 134-44, January.
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  6. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 2001. "Forecasting output and inflation: the role of asset prices," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Mar.
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  8. Rossi, Barbara, 2002. "Testing Long-horizon Predictive Ability with High Persistence, and the Meese-Rogoff Puzzle," Working Papers 02-10, Duke University, Department of Economics.
  9. Barbara Rossi, 2005. "Are Exchange Rates Really Random Walks? Some Evidence Robust to Parameter Instability," Data 0503001, EconWPA.
  10. Jushan Bai, 1997. "Estimation Of A Change Point In Multiple Regression Models," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 79(4), pages 551-563, November.
  11. Donald W.K. Andrews, 1990. "Tests for Parameter Instability and Structural Change with Unknown Change Point," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 943, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  12. Barbara Rossi & Raffaella Giacomini, 2010. "Model Comparisons in Unstable Environments," Working Papers 10-29, Duke University, Department of Economics.
  13. West, Kenneth D, 1996. "Asymptotic Inference about Predictive Ability," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(5), pages 1067-84, September.
  14. Rossi, Barbara, 2005. "Optimal Tests For Nested Model Selection With Underlying Parameter Instability," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 21(05), pages 962-990, October.
  15. 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.
  16. Chu, C.S.J. & Hornik, K. & Kuan, C.M., 1993. "Mosum Tests for Parameter Constancy," Papers 9319, Southern California - Department of Economics.
  17. Graham Elliott & Allan Timmermann, 2005. "Optimal Forecast Combination Under Regime Switching ," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 46(4), pages 1081-1102, November.
  18. Perron, P. & Bai, J., 1995. "Estimating and Testing Linear Models with Multiple Structural Changes," Cahiers de recherche 9552, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
  19. Ploberger, Werner & Kramer, Walter, 1992. "The CUSUM Test with OLS Residuals," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(2), pages 271-85, March.
  20. Taylor, John B., 1993. "Discretion versus policy rules in practice," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 195-214, December.
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  22. Kenneth S. Rogoff & Vania Stavrakeva, 2008. "The Continuing Puzzle of Short Horizon Exchange Rate Forecasting," NBER Working Papers 14071, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Timmermann, Allan, 2008. "Elusive return predictability," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 1-18.
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