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Nested forecast model comparisons: a new approach to testing equal accuracy

  • Todd E. Clark
  • Michael W. McCracken

This paper develops bootstrap methods for testing whether, in a finite sample, competing out-of-sample forecasts from nested models are equally accurate. Most prior work on forecast tests for nested models has focused on a null hypothesis of equal accuracy in population basically, whether coefficients on the extra variables in the larger, nesting model are zero. We instead use an asymptotic approximation that treats the coefficients as non-zero but small, such that, in a finite sample, forecasts from the small model are expected to be as accurate as forecasts from the large model. Under that approximation, we derive the limiting distributions of pairwise tests of equal mean square error, and develop bootstrap methods for estimating critical values. Monte Carlo experiments show that our proposed procedures have good size and power properties for the null of equal finite-sample forecast accuracy. We illustrate the use of the procedures with applications to forecasting stock returns and inflation.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City in its series Research Working Paper with number RWP 09-11.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedkrw:rwp09-11
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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. O. De Bandt & E. Michaux & C. Bruneau & A. Flageollet, 2007. "Forecasting inflation using economic indicators: the case of France," Journal of Forecasting, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 26(1), pages 1-22.
  3. Francis X. Diebold & Robert S. Mariano, 1994. "Comparing Predictive Accuracy," NBER Technical Working Papers 0169, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. West, Kenneth D, 1996. "Asymptotic Inference about Predictive Ability," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(5), pages 1067-84, September.
  5. Rossi, Barbara & Giacomini, Raffaella, 2005. "How Stable is the Forecasting Performance of the Yield Curve for Outpot Growth?," Working Papers 05-08, Duke University, Department of Economics.
  6. Davidson, James & de Jong, Robert M., 2000. "The Functional Central Limit Theorem And Weak Convergence To Stochastic Integrals Ii," Econometric Theory, Cambridge University Press, vol. 16(05), pages 643-666, October.
  7. Corradi, Valentina & Swanson, Norman R., 2002. "A consistent test for nonlinear out of sample predictive accuracy," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 110(2), pages 353-381, October.
  8. McCracken, Michael W., 2007. "Asymptotics for out of sample tests of Granger causality," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 140(2), pages 719-752, October.
  9. Hui Guo, 2006. "On the Out-of-Sample Predictability of Stock Market Returns," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 79(2), pages 645-670, March.
  10. Yu-chin Chen & Kenneth Rogoff & Barbara Rossi, 2010. "Can Exchange Rates Forecast Commodity Prices?," Working Papers 10-07, Duke University, Department of Economics.
  11. Michael Cooper & Huseyin Gulen, 2006. "Is Time-Series-Based Predictability Evident in Real Time?," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 79(3), pages 1263-1292, May.
  12. Sydney Ludvigson & Martin Lettau, 1999. "Consumption, aggregate wealth and expected stock returns," Staff Reports 77, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  13. Pesaran, M Hashem & Timmermann, Allan, 1995. " Predictability of Stock Returns: Robustness and Economic Significance," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(4), pages 1201-28, September.
  14. 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.
  15. Lutz Kilian & Mark P. Taylor, 2001. "Why is it so difficult to beat the Random Walk Forecast of Exchange Rates?," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 01-031/4, Tinbergen Institute.
  16. Molodtsova, Tanya & Papell, David H., 2009. "Out-of-sample exchange rate predictability with Taylor rule fundamentals," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 167-180, April.
  17. Raffaella Giacomini & Halbert White, 2006. "Tests of Conditional Predictive Ability," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 74(6), pages 1545-1578, November.
  18. Ferreira, Miguel A. & Santa-Clara, Pedro, 2011. "Forecasting stock market returns: The sum of the parts is more than the whole," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(3), pages 514-537, June.
  19. Amit Goval & Ivo Welch, 2004. "A Comprehensive Look at the Empirical Performance of Equity Premium Prediction," NBER Working Papers 10483, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Halbert White, 2000. "A Reality Check for Data Snooping," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(5), pages 1097-1126, September.
  21. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 1999. "Forecasting Inflation," NBER Working Papers 7023, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  22. Rapach, David E. & Wohar, Mark E., 2006. "In-sample vs. out-of-sample tests of stock return predictability in the context of data mining," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 231-247, March.
  23. John Y. Campbell & Samuel B. Thompson, 2008. "Predicting Excess Stock Returns Out of Sample: Can Anything Beat the Historical Average?," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 21(4), pages 1509-1531, July.
  24. Todd E. Clark & Michael W. McCracken, 2009. "Combining Forecasts from Nested Models," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 71(3), pages 303-329, 06.
  25. Todd Clark & Michael McCracken, 2005. "Evaluating Direct Multistep Forecasts," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 24(4), pages 369-404.
  26. Alexander W. Butler & Gustavo Grullon & James P. Weston, 2005. "Can Managers Forecast Aggregate Market Returns?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(2), pages 963-986, 04.
  27. Mark, Nelson C, 1995. "Exchange Rates and Fundamentals: Evidence on Long-Horizon Predictability," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(1), pages 201-18, March.
  28. Jan J. J. Groen, 1999. "Long horizon predictability of exchange rates: Is it for real?," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 24(3), pages 451-469.
  29. Bruce E. Hansen, 1995. "Erratum: The Likelihood ratio Test Under Nonstandard Conditions: Testing the Markov Switching Model of GNP," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 296., Boston College Department of Economics.
  30. 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.
  31. 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.
  32. Meese, R. & Rogoff, K., 1988. "Was It Real? The Exchange Rate-Interest Differential Ralation Over The Modern Floating-Rate Period," Working papers 368, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  33. repec:taf:jnlbes:v:30:y:2012:i:1:p:53-66 is not listed on IDEAS
  34. Lance J. Bachmeier & Norman R. Swanson, 2003. "Predicting Inflation: Does The Quantity Theory Help?," Departmental Working Papers 200317, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
  35. 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.
  36. Andrew Atkeson & Lee E. Ohanian., 2001. "Are Phillips curves useful for forecasting inflation?," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Win, pages 2-11.
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