IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ecb/ecbwps/20101157.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Real time estimates of the euro area output gap: reliability and forecasting performance

Author

Listed:
  • Marcellino, Massimiliano
  • Musso, Alberto

Abstract

This paper provides evidence on the reliability of euro area real-time output gap estimates. A genuine real-time data set for the euro area is used, including vintages of several sets of euro area output gap estimates available from 1999 to 2006. It turns out that real-time estimates of the output gap are characterised by a high degree of uncertainty, much higher than that resulting from model and estimation uncertainty only. In particular, the evidence indicates that both the magnitude and the sign of the real-time estimates of the euro area output gap are very uncertain. The uncertainty is mostly due to parameter instability, while data revisions seem to play a minor role. To benchmark our results, we repeat the analysis for the US over the same sample. It turns out that US real time estimates are much more correlated with final estimates than for the euro area, data revisions play a larger role, but overall the unreliability in real time of the US output gap measures detected in earlier studies is confirmed in the more recent period. Moreover, despite some difference across output gap estimates and forecast horizons, the results point clearly to a lack of any usefulness of real-time output gap estimates for inflation forecasting both in the short term (one-quarter and one-year ahead) and the medium term (two-year and three-year ahead). By contrast, some evidence is provided indicating that several output gap estimates are useful to forecast real GDP growth, particularly in the short term, and some appear also useful in the medium run. No single output gap measure appears superior to all others in all respects. JEL Classification: E31, E37, E52, E58

Suggested Citation

  • Marcellino, Massimiliano & Musso, Alberto, 2010. "Real time estimates of the euro area output gap: reliability and forecasting performance," Working Paper Series 1157, European Central Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20101157
    Note: 93259
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.ecb.europa.eu//pub/pdf/scpwps/ecbwp1157.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Orphanides, Athanasios & van Norden, Simon, 2005. "The Reliability of Inflation Forecasts Based on Output Gap Estimates in Real Time," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 37(3), pages 583-601, June.
    2. Kilian, Lutz, 1999. "Exchange Rates and Monetary Fundamentals: What Do We Learn from Long-Horizon Regressions?," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(5), pages 491-510, Sept.-Oct.
    3. S. Boragan Aruoba, 2008. "Data Revisions Are Not Well Behaved," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(2-3), pages 319-340, March.
    4. Nelson, Edward & Nikolov, Kalin, 2003. "UK inflation in the 1970s and 1980s: the role of output gap mismeasurement," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 55(4), pages 353-370.
    5. Marianne Baxter & Robert G. King, 1999. "Measuring Business Cycles: Approximate Band-Pass Filters For Economic Time Series," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 81(4), pages 575-593, November.
    6. Christophe Planas & Alessandro Rossi, 2004. "Can inflation data improve the real-time reliability of output gap estimates?," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(1), pages 121-133.
    7. Athanasios Orphanides & Simon van Norden, 2002. "The Unreliability of Output-Gap Estimates in Real Time," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(4), pages 569-583, November.
    8. Domenico Giannone & Jérôme Henry & Magdalena Lalik & Michele Modugno, 2012. "An Area-Wide Real-Time Database for the Euro Area," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(4), pages 1000-1013, November.
    9. Orphanides, Athanasios, 2003. "The quest for prosperity without inflation," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 633-663, April.
    10. Stock, James H. & Watson, Mark W., 1999. "Forecasting inflation," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 293-335, October.
    11. Domenico Giannone & Lucrezia Reichlin, 2005. "Trends and cycles in the Euro Area: how much heterogeneity and should we worry about it?," Macroeconomics 0511016, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    12. Andrews, Donald W K, 1991. "Heteroskedasticity and Autocorrelation Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(3), pages 817-858, May.
    13. John F. Henry & L. Randall Wray, 1998. "Economic Time," Macroeconomics 9811004, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    14. Alberto Musso & Livio Stracca & Dick van Dijk, 2009. "Instability and Nonlinearity in the Euro-Area Phillips Curve," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 5(2), pages 181-212, June.
    15. Tommaso Proietti & Alberto Musso & Thomas Westermann, 2007. "Estimating potential output and the output gap for the euro area: a model-based production function approach," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 33(1), pages 85-113, July.
    16. Filippo Altissimo & Laurent Bilke & Andrew Levin & Thomas Mathä & Benoit Mojon, 2006. "Sectoral and Aggregate Inflation Dynamics in the Euro Area," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 4(2-3), pages 585-593, 04-05.
    17. Cristadoro, Riccardo & Forni, Mario & Reichlin, Lucrezia & Veronese, Giovanni, 2001. "A Core Inflation Index for the Euro Area," CEPR Discussion Papers 3097, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    18. Harvey, A C & Jaeger, A, 1993. "Detrending, Stylized Facts and the Business Cycle," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(3), pages 231-247, July-Sept.
    19. Clark, Todd E. & McCracken, Michael W., 2009. "Tests of Equal Predictive Ability With Real-Time Data," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 27(4), pages 441-454.
    20. James H. Stock & Mark W.Watson, 2003. "Forecasting Output and Inflation: The Role of Asset Prices," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 41(3), pages 788-829, September.
    21. Clark, Todd E. & McCracken, Michael W., 2005. "The power of tests of predictive ability in the presence of structural breaks," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 124(1), pages 1-31, January.
    22. Maximo Camacho & Gabriel Perez-Quiros, 2010. "Introducing the euro-sting: Short-term indicator of euro area growth," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(4), pages 663-694.
    23. Cayen, Jean-Philippe & van Norden, Simon, 2005. "The reliability of Canadian output-gap estimates," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 373-393, December.
    24. Nelson, Edward & Nikolov, Kalin, 2004. "Monetary Policy and Stagflation in the UK," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(3), pages 293-318, June.
    25. Kuttner, Kenneth N, 1994. "Estimating Potential Output as a Latent Variable," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 12(3), pages 361-368, July.
    26. David H. Romer & Christina D. Romer, 2000. "Federal Reserve Information and the Behavior of Interest Rates," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(3), pages 429-457, June.
    27. Clark, Todd E. & McCracken, Michael W., 2006. "The Predictive Content of the Output Gap for Inflation: Resolving In-Sample and Out-of-Sample Evidence," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 38(5), pages 1127-1148, August.
    28. Rünstler, Gerhard, 2002. "The information content of real-time output gap estimates, an application to the euro area," Working Paper Series 182, European Central Bank.
    29. Hamilton, James D., 1986. "A standard error for the estimated state vector of a state-space model," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 387-397, December.
    30. Fagan, Gabriel & Henry, Jerome & Mestre, Ricardo, 2005. "An area-wide model for the euro area," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 39-59, January.
    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. Martin Gächter & Aleksandra Riedl & Doris Ritzberger-Grünwald, 2012. "Business Cycle Synchronization in the Euro Area and the Impact of the Financial Crisis," Monetary Policy & the Economy, Oesterreichische Nationalbank (Austrian Central Bank), issue 2, pages 33-60.
    2. Marcin Wolski, 2016. "Welfare-theoretic Optimal Policies in a New-Keynesian Economy with Heterogeneous Regions: Any Role for Financial Integration?," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(3), pages 742-761, May.
    3. Guérin, Pierre & Maurin, Laurent & Mohr, Matthias, 2015. "Trend-Cycle Decomposition Of Output And Euro Area Inflation Forecasts: A Real-Time Approach Based On Model Combination," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 19(2), pages 363-393, March.
    4. Kuzin, Vladimir & Marcellino, Massimiliano & Schumacher, Christian, 2011. "MIDAS vs. mixed-frequency VAR: Nowcasting GDP in the euro area," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 529-542.
    5. Domenico Giannone & Jérôme Henry & Magdalena Lalik & Michele Modugno, 2012. "An Area-Wide Real-Time Database for the Euro Area," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(4), pages 1000-1013, November.
    6. Otmar Issing, 2010. "The development of monetary policy in the 20th century – some reflections," Working Paper Research 186, National Bank of Belgium.
    7. Garratt, Anthony & Mitchell, James & Vahey, Shaun P., 2014. "Measuring output gap nowcast uncertainty," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 268-279.
    8. Nicolas Pinkwart, 2013. "Quantifying The European Central Bank'S Interest Rate Smoothing Behavior," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 81(4), pages 470-492, July.
    9. Anthony Garratt & James Mitchell & Shaun P. Vahey, 2009. "Measuring output gap uncertainty," Reserve Bank of New Zealand Discussion Paper Series DP2009/15, Reserve Bank of New Zealand.
    10. Lucian Croitoru, 2014. "Will there be Deflation and Current Account Surpluses?," Journal for Economic Forecasting, Institute for Economic Forecasting, vol. 0(3), pages 5-21, October.
    11. Kuzin, Vladimir N. & Marcellino, Massimiliano & Schumacher, Christian, 2009. "MIDAS versus mixed-frequency VAR: nowcasting GDP in the euro area," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2009,07, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    12. Bjørn Eraker & Ching Wai (Jeremy) Chiu & Andrew T. Foerster & Tae Bong Kim & Hernán D. Seoane, 2015. "Bayesian Mixed Frequency VARs," Journal of Financial Econometrics, Society for Financial Econometrics, vol. 13(3), pages 698-721.
    13. Christian Gayer & Bertrand Marc, 2018. "A ‘New Modesty’? Level Shifts in Survey Data and the Decreasing Trend of ‘Normal’ Growth," European Economy - Discussion Papers 2015 - 083, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Marcellino, Massimiliano & Musso, Alberto, 2011. "The reliability of real-time estimates of the euro area output gap," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 1842-1856, July.
    2. Cayen, Jean-Philippe & van Norden, Simon, 2005. "The reliability of Canadian output-gap estimates," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 373-393, December.
    3. Clark, Todd E. & McCracken, Michael W., 2006. "The Predictive Content of the Output Gap for Inflation: Resolving In-Sample and Out-of-Sample Evidence," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 38(5), pages 1127-1148, August.
    4. Clark, Todd & McCracken, Michael, 2013. "Advances in Forecast Evaluation," Handbook of Economic Forecasting, in: G. Elliott & C. Granger & A. Timmermann (ed.), Handbook of Economic Forecasting, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 0, pages 1107-1201, Elsevier.
    5. Xueting Yu & Yuhan Zhu & Guangming Lv, 2020. "Analysis of the Impact of China’s GDP Data Revision on Monetary Policy from the Perspective of Uncertainty," Emerging Markets Finance and Trade, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 56(6), pages 1251-1274, May.
    6. Clark, Todd E. & McCracken, Michael W., 2009. "Tests of Equal Predictive Ability With Real-Time Data," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 27(4), pages 441-454.
    7. Athanasios Orphanides & John C. Williams, 2002. "Robust Monetary Policy Rules with Unknown Natural Rates," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 33(2), pages 63-146.
    8. Aastveit, Knut Are & Trovik, Tørres, 2014. "Estimating the output gap in real time: A factor model approach," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 180-193.
    9. Matthieu LEMOINE & Odile CHAGNY, 2005. "Estimating the potential output of the euro area with a semi-structural multivariate Hodrick-Prescott filter," Computing in Economics and Finance 2005 344, Society for Computational Economics.
    10. Orphanides, Athanasios & van Norden, Simon, 2005. "The Reliability of Inflation Forecasts Based on Output Gap Estimates in Real Time," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 37(3), pages 583-601, June.
    11. Athanasios Orphanides & Simon van Norden, 2002. "The Unreliability of Output-Gap Estimates in Real Time," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(4), pages 569-583, November.
    12. Camila Figueroa & Jorge Fornero & Pablo García, 2019. "Hindsight vs. Real time measurement of the output gap: Implications for the Phillips curve in the Chilean Case," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 854, Central Bank of Chile.
    13. Hilde Bjørnland & Leif Brubakk & Anne Jore, 2008. "Forecasting inflation with an uncertain output gap," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 35(3), pages 413-436, November.
    14. Marcellino, Massimiliano & Musso, Alberto, 2010. "The Forecasting Performance of Real Time Estimates of the Euro Area Output Gap," CEPR Discussion Papers 7763, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    15. Alberto Musso & Livio Stracca & Dick van Dijk, 2009. "Instability and Nonlinearity in the Euro-Area Phillips Curve," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 5(2), pages 181-212, June.
    16. Planas, C. & Roeger, W. & Rossi, A., 2013. "The information content of capacity utilization for detrending total factor productivity," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 577-590.
    17. Christopher Adam & David Cobham, 2009. "Using Real-Time Output Gaps To Examine Past And Future Policy Choices," National Institute Economic Review, National Institute of Economic and Social Research, vol. 210(1), pages 98-110, October.
    18. Galvão, Ana Beatriz, 2013. "Changes in predictive ability with mixed frequency data," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 395-410.
    19. Guérin, Pierre & Maurin, Laurent & Mohr, Matthias, 2015. "Trend-Cycle Decomposition Of Output And Euro Area Inflation Forecasts: A Real-Time Approach Based On Model Combination," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 19(2), pages 363-393, March.
    20. Günes Kamber & James Morley & Benjamin Wong, 2018. "Intuitive and Reliable Estimates of the Output Gap from a Beveridge-Nelson Filter," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 100(3), pages 550-566, July.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    data revisions; euro area; Inflation forecasts; output gap; real-time data; real GDP forecasts;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation
    • E37 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    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:ecb:ecbwps:20101157. 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: (Official Publications). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/emieude.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.