Biases In Macroeconomic Forecasts: Irrationality Or Asymmetric Loss?
Empirical studies using survey data on expectations have frequently observed that forecasts are biased and have concluded that agents are not rational. We establish that existing rationality tests are not robust to even small deviations from symmetric loss and hence have little ability to tell whether the forecaster is irrational or the loss function is asymmetric. We quantify the exact trade-off between forecast inefficiency and asymmetric loss leading to identical outcomes of standard rationality tests and explore new and more general methods for testing forecast rationality jointly with flexible families of loss functions that embed quadratic loss as a special case. An empirical application to survey data on forecasts of nominal output growth demonstrates the empirical significance of our results and finds that rejections of rationality may largely have been driven by the assumption of symmetric loss.
|Date of creation:||May 2005|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Crawford Building, Lennox Crossing, Building #132, Canberra ACT 2601|
Phone: +61 2 6125 4705
Fax: +61 2 6125 5448
Web page: http://cama.crawford.anu.edu.au
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Kenneth D. West & Michael W. McCracken, 1998.
"Regression-Based Tests of Predictive Ability,"
NBER Technical Working Papers
0226, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Christoffersen & Diebold, .
"Optimal Prediction Under Asymmetric Loss,"
167, 1996., University of Pennsylvania.
- Peter F. Christoffersen & Francis X. Diebold, 1994. "Optimal Prediction Under Asymmetric Loss," NBER Technical Working Papers 0167, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Peter F. Christoffersen & Francis X. Diebold, 1997. "Optimal prediction under asymmetric loss," Working Papers 97-11, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
- Peter F. Christoffersen & Francis X. Diebold, . "Optimal Prediction Under Asymmetric Loss," CARESS Working Papres 97-20, University of Pennsylvania Center for Analytic Research and Economics in the Social Sciences.
- Leitch, Gordon & Tanner, J Ernest, 1991. "Economic Forecast Evaluation: Profits versus the Conventional Error Measures," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(3), pages 580-90, June.
- Chadha, J.S. & Schellekens, P., 1998.
"Utility functions for central bankers: the not so drastic quadratic,"
Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics
9818, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
- Jagjit Chadha & Philip Schellekens, 1998. "Utility Functions For Central Bankers: The Not So Drastic Quadratic," FMG Discussion Papers dp308, Financial Markets Group.
- Bonham, Carl & Cohen, Richard, 1995. "Testing the Rationality of Price Forecasts: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(1), pages 284-89, March.
- Frederic S. Mishkin, 1983.
"Are Market Forecasts Rational?,"
in: A Rational Expectations Approach to Macroeconomics: Testing Policy Ineffectiveness and Efficient-Markets Models, pages 59-75
National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Kajal Lahiri & Antony Davies & Xuguang Sheng, 2010. "Analyzing Three-Dimensional Panel Data of Forecasts," Discussion Papers 10-07, University at Albany, SUNY, Department of Economics.
- Brown, Bryan W & Maital, Shlomo, 1981. "What Do Economists Know? An Empirical Study of Experts' Expectations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(2), pages 491-504, March.
- Mehra, Rajnish & Prescott, Edward C., 1985.
"The equity premium: A puzzle,"
Journal of Monetary Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 145-161, March.
- N. Gregory Mankiw & Ricardo Reis & Justin Wolfers, 2003.
"Disagreement about Inflation Expectations,"
NBER Working Papers
9796, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- N. Gregory Mankiw & Ricardo Reis & Justin Wolfers, 2003. "Disagreement about Inflation Expectations," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2011, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
- N. Gregory Mankiw & Ricardo Augusto Marc Rocha Reis & Justin Wolfers, 2004. "Disagreement about Inflation Expectations," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm391, Yale School of Management.
- Mankiw, N. Gregory & Reis, Ricardo & Wolfers, Justin, 2003. "Disagreement about Inflation Expectations," Research Papers 1807, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
- Owen Lamont, 1995.
"Macroeconomics Forecasts and Microeconomic Forecasters,"
NBER Working Papers
5284, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Lamont, Owen A., 2002. "Macroeconomic forecasts and microeconomic forecasters," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 48(3), pages 265-280, July.
- Scharfstein, David S & Stein, Jeremy C, 1990.
"Herd Behavior and Investment,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 80(3), pages 465-79, June.
- Trueman, Brett, 1994. "Analyst Forecasts and Herding Behavior," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 7(1), pages 97-124.
- Kenneth D. West, 1994.
"Asymptotic Inference About Predictive Ability,"
- Whitney K. Newey & Kenneth D. West, 1986.
"A Simple, Positive Semi-Definite, Heteroskedasticity and AutocorrelationConsistent Covariance Matrix,"
NBER Technical Working Papers
0055, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Newey, Whitney & West, Kenneth, 2014. "A simple, positive semi-definite, heteroscedasticity and autocorrelation consistent covariance matrix," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 33(1), pages 125-132.
- Newey, Whitney K & West, Kenneth D, 1987. "A Simple, Positive Semi-definite, Heteroskedasticity and Autocorrelation Consistent Covariance Matrix," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(3), pages 703-08, May.
- Hansen, Lars Peter, 1982. "Large Sample Properties of Generalized Method of Moments Estimators," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(4), pages 1029-54, July.
- Fama, Eugene F, 1975. "Short-Term Interest Rates as Predictors of Inflation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 65(3), pages 269-82, June.
- Zellner, Arnold, 1986. "Biased predictors, rationality and the evaluation of forecasts," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 45-48.
- Mc Cracken, Michael W., 2000. "Robust out-of-sample inference," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 99(2), pages 195-223, December.
- Tilman Ehrbeck & Robert Waldmann, 1996. "Why Are Professional Forecasters Biased? Agency versus Behavioral Explanations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 111(1), pages 21-40.
- Keane, Michael P & Runkle, David E, 1990. "Testing the Rationality of Price Forecasts: New Evidence from Panel Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(4), pages 714-35, September.
- Zarnowitz, Victor, 1985. "Rational Expectations and Macroeconomic Forecasts," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 3(4), pages 293-311, October.
- A. Robert Nobay & David A. Peel, 1998. "Optimal Monetary Policy in a Model of Asymmetric Central Bank Preferences," FMG Discussion Papers dp306, Financial Markets Group.
- John Conlisk, 1996. "Why Bounded Rationality?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 34(2), pages 669-700, June.
- repec:cup:etheor:v:13:y:1997:i:6:p:808-17 is not listed on IDEAS
- Elliott, Graham & Komunjer, Ivana & Timmermann, Allan G, 2003. "Estimating Loss Function Parameters," CEPR Discussion Papers 3821, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Batchelor, Roy & Peel, David A., 1998. "Rationality testing under asymmetric loss," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 49-54, October.
- Krane, Spencer D, 1994. "The Distinction between Inventory Holding and Stockout Costs: Implications for Target Inventories, Asymmetric Adjustment, and the Effect of Aggregation on Production Smoothing," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 35(1), pages 117-36, February.
- Davies, Anthony & Lahiri, Kajal, 1995. "A new framework for analyzing survey forecasts using three-dimensional panel data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 205-227, July.
- Batchelor, Roy & Dua, Pami, 1991. "Blue Chip Rationality Tests," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 23(4), pages 692-705, November.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:een:camaaa:2005-14. 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: (Cama Admin)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.