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The Effect of Seasonal Adjustment on the Properties of Business Cycle Regimes

We study the impact of seasonal adjustment on the properties of business cycle expansion and recession regimes using analytical, simulation and empirical methods. Analytically, we show that the X-11 adjustment filter both reduces the magnitude of change at turning points and reduces the depth of recessions, with specific effects depending on the length of the recession. A simulation analysis using Markov switching models confirms these properties, with particularly undesirable effects in delaying the recognition of the end of a recession. However, seasonal adjustment can have desirable properties in clarifying the true regime when this is well underway. The empirical findings, based on four coincident US business cycle indicators, reinforce the analytical and simulation results by showing that seasonal adjustment leads to the identification of longer and shallower recessions than obtained using unadjusted data.

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Paper provided by Universita' degli Studi di Firenze, Dipartimento di Statistica, Informatica, Applicazioni "G. Parenti" in its series Econometrics Working Papers Archive with number wp2005_15.

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Length: 37
Date of creation: Sep 2005
Date of revision:
Publication status: forthcoming Journal of Applied Econometrics
Handle: RePEc:fir:econom:wp2005_15
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  1. Cecchetti, Stephen G. & Kashyap, Anil K, 1996. "International cycles," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(2), pages 331-360, February.
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  5. Canova, F. & Ghysels, E., 1992. "Changes in Seasonal Patters: Are They Cyclical," Cahiers de recherche 9216, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
  6. Hansen, Bruce E, 1997. "Approximate Asymptotic P Values for Structural-Change Tests," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 15(1), pages 60-67, January.
  7. Jeffrey A. Miron & Stephen P. Zeldes, . "Seasonality, Cost Shocks and the Production Smoothing Model of Inventories," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 1-87, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
  8. Ghysels, Eric & Granger, Clive W J & Siklos, Pierre L, 1996. "Is Seasonal Adjustment a Linear or Nonlinear Data-Filtering Process?," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 14(3), pages 374-86, July.
  9. Matas Mir, Antonio & Osborn, Denise R, 2004. "Seasonal adjustment and the detection of business cycle phases," Working Paper Series 0357, European Central Bank.
  10. M Sensier & D van Dijk, 2003. "Testing for Volatility Changes in US Macroeconomic Time Series," Centre for Growth and Business Cycle Research Discussion Paper Series 36, Economics, The Univeristy of Manchester.
  11. D R Osborn & A Matas-Mir, 2003. "The Extent of Seasonal/Business Cycle Interactions in European Industrial Production," Centre for Growth and Business Cycle Research Discussion Paper Series 38, Economics, The Univeristy of Manchester.
  12. Lawrence J. Christiano & Richard M. Todd, 2000. "The Conventional Treatment of Seasonality in Business Cycle Analysis: Does it Create Distortions?," NBER Technical Working Papers 0266, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Spencer D. Krane & William L. Wascher, 1995. "The cyclical sensitivity of seasonality in U.S. employment," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 95-43, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  14. Burridge, Peter & Wallis, Kenneth F, 1984. "Unobserved-Components Models for Seasonal Adjustment Filters," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 2(4), pages 350-59, October.
  15. Hamilton, James D., 1990. "Analysis of time series subject to changes in regime," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 45(1-2), pages 39-70.
  16. Ghysels,Eric & Osborn,Denise R., 2001. "The Econometric Analysis of Seasonal Time Series," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521562607, November.
  17. Ghysels, Eric & Perron, Pierre, 1993. "The effect of seasonal adjustment filters on tests for a unit root," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1-2), pages 57-98.
  18. Beatriz C. Galvao, Ana, 2002. "Can non-linear time series models generate US business cycle asymmetric shape?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 187-194, October.
  19. Hamilton, James D, 1989. "A New Approach to the Economic Analysis of Nonstationary Time Series and the Business Cycle," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(2), pages 357-84, March.
  20. Franses, Philip Hans & Paap, Richard, 1999. "Does Seasonality Influence the Dating of Business Cycle Turning Points?," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 79-92, January.
  21. Rob Luginbuhl & Aart de Vos, 2003. "Seasonality and Markov switching in an unobserved component time series model," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 28(2), pages 365-386, 04.
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  23. Bell, William R & Hillmer, Steven C, 1984. "Issues Involved with the Seasonal Adjustment of Economic Time Series," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 2(4), pages 291-320, October.
  24. Findley, David F, et al, 1998. "New Capabilities and Methods of the X-12-ARIMA Seasonal-Adjustment Program," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 16(2), pages 127-52, April.
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