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The forecasting horizon of inflationary expectations and perceptions in the EU – Is it really 12 months?

  • Lars Jonung
  • Staffan Linden

We use survey based inflationary expectations to explore the forecasting horizons implicitly used by the respondents to questions about the expected rate of inflation during the coming 12 months. We examine the forecast errors, the mean error and the RMSEs, to study if the forecast horizon is truly 12 months as implied by the questionnaires. Our working hypothesis is that the forecast error has a U-shaped pattern, reaching its lowest value on the 12-month horizon. Our exploratory study reveals large differences across countries. For most countries, we get the expected U-shaped outcome for the forecast errors. The horizon implicitly used by respondents when answering the questions is not related to the explicit time horizon of the questionnaire. On average respondents use the same horizon when answering both questions.

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File URL: http://ec.europa.eu/economy_finance/publications/economic_paper/2010/ecp435_en.htm
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Paper provided by Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission in its series European Economy - Economic Papers with number 435.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:euf:ecopap:0435
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  1. Jonung, Lars, 1981. "Perceived and Expected Rates of Inflation in Sweden," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 961-68, December.
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