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Forecast disagreement among FOMC members

  • Chanont Banternghansa
  • Michael W. McCracken

This paper presents empirical evidence on the disagreement among Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) forecasts. In contrast to earlier studies that analyze the range of FOMC forecasts available in the Monetary Policy Report to the Congress, we analyze the forecasts made by each individual member of the FOMC from 1992 to 1998. This newly available dataset, while rich in detail, is short in duration. Even so, we are able to identify a handful of patterns in the forecasts related to i) forecast horizon; ii) whether the individual is a Federal Reserve Bank president, governor, and/or Vice Chairman; and iii) whether individual is a voting member of the FOMC. Additional comparisons are made between forecasts made by the FOMC and the Survey of Professional Forecasters.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis in its series Working Papers with number 2009-059.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedlwp:2009-059
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  1. 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.
  2. William T. Gavin & Geetanjali Pande, 2008. "FOMC consensus forecasts," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 149-164.
  3. Faust, Jon & Wright, Jonathan H., 2008. "Efficient forecast tests for conditional policy forecasts," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 146(2), pages 293-303, October.
  4. Ellison, Martin & Sargent, Thomas J, 2009. "A defence of the FOMC," CEPR Discussion Papers 7510, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    • Martin Ellison & Thomas J. Sargent, 2012. "A Defense Of The Fomc," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 53(4), pages 1047-1065, November.
  5. Kajal Lahiri & Xuguang Sheng, 2009. "Measuring Forecast Uncertainty by Disagreement: The Missing Link," Discussion Papers 09-06, University at Albany, SUNY, Department of Economics.
  6. David Romer, 2010. "A New Data Set on Monetary Policy: The Economic Forecasts of Individual Members of the FOMC," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 42(5), pages 951-957, 08.
  7. Christina D. Romer & David H. Romer, 2008. "The FOMC versus the Staff: Where Can Monetary Policymakers Add Value?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(2), pages 230-35, May.
  8. James Bullard, 2009. "Discussion of Ellison and Sargent: what questions are staff and FOMC forecasts supposed to answer?," Speech 159, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  9. Gavin, William T. & Mandal, Rachel J., 2003. "Evaluating FOMC forecasts," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 655-667.
  10. Lahiri, Kajal & Sheng, Xuguang, 2008. "Evolution of forecast disagreement in a Bayesian learning model," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 144(2), pages 325-340, June.
  11. Struyf, Anja & Rousseeuw, Peter J., 2000. "High-dimensional computation of the deepest location," Computational Statistics & Data Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 415-426, October.
  12. William T. Gavin, 2003. "FOMC forecasts: is all the information in the central tendency?," Working Papers 2003-002, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  13. 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.
  14. Henry W. Chappell Jr. & Rob Roy McGregor, 2000. "A Long History of FOMC Voting Behavior," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 66(4), pages 906-922, April.
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