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Surprise and uncertainty indexes: real-time aggregation of real-activity macro surprises

  • Scotti, Chiara

I construct two daily, real-time, real activity indexes for the United States, Euro area, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Japan: (i) a surprise index that summarizes recent economic data surprises and measures optimism/pessimism about the state of the economy, and (ii) an uncertainty index that measures uncertainty related to the state of the economy. The surprise index preserves the properties of the underlying series in affecting asset prices, with the advantage of being a parsimonious summary measure of real-activity surprises. For the United States, the real-activity uncertainty index is compared to other proxies commonly used to measure uncertainty to show that when uncertainty is strictly related to real activity, it has a potentially milder impact on economic activity than when it also relates to the financial sector.

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Paper provided by Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.) in its series International Finance Discussion Papers with number 1093.

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Length: 42 pages
Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision: 20 May 2016
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgif:1093
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  1. Ana Fostel & John Geanakoplos, 2010. "Why Does Bad News Increase Volatility and Decrease Leverage?," IMF Working Papers 10/206, International Monetary Fund.
  2. Simon Gilchrist & Egon Zakrajsek & Cristina Fuentes Albero & Dario Caldara, 2013. "On the Identification of Financial and Uncertainty Shocks," 2013 Meeting Papers 965, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  3. Giannone, Domenico & Reichlin, Lucrezia & Small, David, 2005. "Nowcasting GDP and Inflation: The Real Time Informational Content of Macroeconomic Data Releases," CEPR Discussion Papers 5178, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Doz, Catherine & Giannone, Domenico & Reichlin, Lucrezia, 2007. "A Two-Step Estimator for Large Approximate Dynamic Factor Models Based on Kalman Filtering," CEPR Discussion Papers 6043, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Pesaran, H. Hashem & Shin, Yongcheol, 1998. "Generalized impulse response analysis in linear multivariate models," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 17-29, January.
  6. Sylvain Leduc & Zheng Liu, 2012. "Uncertainty shocks are aggregate demand shocks," Working Paper Series 2012-10, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  7. Faust, Jon & Rogers, John H & Wright, Jonathan H, 2005. "News and Noise in G-7 GDP Announcements," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 37(3), pages 403-19, June.
  8. Catherine Doz & Domenico Giannone & Lucrezia Reichlin, 2012. "A Quasi–Maximum Likelihood Approach for Large, Approximate Dynamic Factor Models," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(4), pages 1014-1024, November.
  9. Camacho, Maximo & Pérez-Quirós, Gabriel, 2009. "Introducing the Euro-STING: Short-Term Indicator of Euro Area Growth," CEPR Discussion Papers 7343, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Bańbura, Marta & Modugno, Michele, 2010. "Maximum likelihood estimation of factor models on data sets with arbitrary pattern of missing data," Working Paper Series 1189, European Central Bank.
  11. repec:hal:journl:peer-00844811 is not listed on IDEAS
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