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Revisions to PCE inflation measures: implications for monetary policy

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  • Dean Croushore

Abstract

This paper examines the characteristics of the revisions to the inflation rate as measured by the personal consumption expenditures price index both including and excluding food and energy prices. These data series play a major role in the Federal Reserve’s analysis of inflation. ; The author examines the magnitude and patterns of revisions to both PCE inflation rates. The first question he poses is: What do data revisions look like? The author runs a variety of tests to see if the data revisions have desirable or exploitable properties. The second question he poses is related to the first: Can we forecast data revisions in real time? The answer is that it is possible to forecast revisions from the initial release to August of the following year. Generally, the initial release of inflation is too low and is likely to be revised up. Policymakers should account for this predictability in setting monetary policy.

Suggested Citation

  • Dean Croushore, 2008. "Revisions to PCE inflation measures: implications for monetary policy," Working Papers 08-8, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedpwp:08-8
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. S. Boragan Aruoba, 2008. "Data Revisions Are Not Well Behaved," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(2-3), pages 319-340, March.
    2. Croushore, Dean & Stark, Tom, 2001. "A real-time data set for macroeconomists," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 105(1), pages 111-130, November.
    3. Mork, Knut Anton, 1987. "Ain't Behavin': Forecast Errors and Measurement Errors in Early GNP Estimates," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 5(2), pages 165-175, April.
    4. Croushore, Dean, 2006. "Forecasting with Real-Time Macroeconomic Data," Handbook of Economic Forecasting, Elsevier.
    5. Patterson, K. D., 1994. "A state space model for reducing the uncertainty associated with preliminary vintages of data with an application to aggregate consumption," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 46(3), pages 215-222, November.
    6. 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 403-419, June.
    7. William Conrad & Carol Corrado, 1978. "Applications of the Kalman filter to revisions in monthly retail sales estimates," Special Studies Papers 125, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    8. Anthony Garratt & Shaun P Vahey, 2006. "UK Real-Time Macro Data Characteristics," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 116(509), pages 119-135, February.
    9. N. Gregory Mankiw & Matthew D. Shapiro, 1986. "News or Noise? An Analysis of GNP Revisions," NBER Working Papers 1939, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Dean Croushore & Tom Stark, 2003. "A Real-Time Data Set for Macroeconomists: Does the Data Vintage Matter?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(3), pages 605-617, August.
    11. Howrey, E Philip, 1978. "The Use of Preliminary Data in Econometric Forecasting," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 60(2), pages 193-200, May.
    12. Patterson, Kerry D & Heravi, Saeed M, 1991. "Data Revisions and the Expenditure Components of GDP," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 101(407), pages 887-901, July.
    13. Andrew C. Krikelas, 1994. "Revision to payroll employment data: are they predictable?," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, issue Nov, pages 17-29.
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    Cited by:

    1. Gilbert, Thomas, 2011. "Information aggregation around macroeconomic announcements: Revisions matter," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 101(1), pages 114-131, July.
    2. Tierney, Heather L.R., 2009. "A Local Examination for Persistence in Exclusions-from-Core Measures of Inflation Using Real-Time Data," MPRA Paper 13383, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 03 Feb 2009.
    3. Tierney, Heather L.R., 2011. "Real-time data revisions and the PCE measure of inflation," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 1763-1773, July.
    4. Dean Croushore, 2011. "Frontiers of Real-Time Data Analysis," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 49(1), pages 72-100, March.
    5. Dean Croushore, 2009. "Commentary on Estimating U.S. output growth with vintage data in a state-space framework," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jul, pages 371-382.
    6. Richard G. Anderson & Charles S. Gascon, 2009. "Estimating U.S. output growth with vintage data in a state-space framework," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jul, pages 349-370.
    7. Heather L. R. Tierney, 2012. "Examining the ability of core inflation to capture the overall trend of total inflation," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(4), pages 493-514, February.
    8. Tierney, Heather L.R., 2009. "Evaluating Exclusion-from-Core Measures of Inflation using Real-Time Data," MPRA Paper 17856, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Faust, Jon & Wright, Jonathan H., 2013. "Forecasting Inflation," Handbook of Economic Forecasting, Elsevier.
    10. Guido Lorenzoni, 2009. "A Theory of Demand Shocks," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(5), pages 2050-2084, December.
    11. Galbraith, John W. & van Norden, Simon, 2011. "Kernel-based calibration diagnostics for recession and inflation probability forecasts," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 1041-1057, October.
    12. Kishor, N. Kundan, 2011. "Data revisions in India: Implications for monetary policy," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 164-173, April.
    13. Kishor, N. Kundan, 2009. "Data Revisions in India and its Implications for Monetary Policy," MPRA Paper 16099, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    14. Michael P. Clements & Ana Beatriz Galvão, 2012. "Improving Real-Time Estimates of Output and Inflation Gaps With Multiple-Vintage Models," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 30(4), pages 554-562, May.

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    Keywords

    Inflation (Finance) ; Monetary policy;

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