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Forecasting Macroeconomic Time Series With Locally Adaptive Signal Extraction

  • Giordani, Paolo

    ()

    (Research Department, Central Bank of Sweden)

  • Villani, Mattias

    (Research Department, Central Bank of Sweden)

We introduce a non-Gaussian dynamic mixture model for macroeconomic forecasting. The Locally Adaptive Signal Extraction and Regression (LASER) model is designed to capture relatively persistent AR processes (signal) contaminated by high frequency noise. The distribution of the innovations in both noise and signal is robustly modeled using mixtures of normals. The mean of the process and the variances of the signal and noise are allowed to shift suddenly or gradually at unknown locations and number of times. The model is then capable of capturing movements in the mean and conditional variance of a series as well as in the signal-to-noise ratio. Four versions of the model are used to forecast six quarterly US and Swedish macroeconomic series. We conclude that (i) allowing for infrequent and large shifts in mean while imposing normal iid errors often leads to erratic forecasts, (ii) such shifts/breaks versions of the model can forecast well if robustified by allowing for non-normal errors and time varying variances, (iii) infrequent and large shifts in error variances outperform smooth and continuous shifts substantially when it comes to interval coverage, (iv) for point forecasts, robust time varying specifications improve slightly upon fixed parameter specifications on average, but the relative performances can differ sizably in various sub-samples, v) for interval forecasts, robust versions that allow for infrequent shifts in variances perform substantially and consistently better than time invariant specifications.

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File URL: http://www.riksbank.se/upload/Dokument_riksbank/Kat_publicerat/WorkingPapers/2009/wp234.pdf
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Paper provided by Sveriges Riksbank (Central Bank of Sweden) in its series Working Paper Series with number 234.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: 01 Oct 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hhs:rbnkwp:0234
Contact details of provider: Postal: Sveriges Riksbank, SE-103 37 Stockholm, Sweden
Phone: 08 - 787 00 00
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Web page: http://www.riksbank.com/Email:


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  1. Clive W.J. Granger & Namwon Hyung, 2013. "Occasional Structural Breaks and Long Memory," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 14(2), pages 739-764, November.
  2. Bessec Marie & Bouabdallah Othman, 2005. "What Causes The Forecasting Failure of Markov-Switching Models? A Monte Carlo Study," Studies in Nonlinear Dynamics & Econometrics, De Gruyter, vol. 9(2), pages 1-24, June.
  3. Gary Koop & Simon M. Potter, 2004. "Prior Elicitation in Multiple Change-point Models," Discussion Papers in Economics 04/26, Department of Economics, University of Leicester.
  4. 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.
  5. Giordani, Paolo & Kohn, Robert, 2008. "Efficient Bayesian Inference for Multiple Change-Point and Mixture Innovation Models," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 26, pages 66-77, January.
  6. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 1994. "Evidence on Structural Instability in Macroeconomic Time Series Relations," NBER Technical Working Papers 0164, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 2006. "Why Has U.S. Inflation Become Harder to Forecast?," NBER Working Papers 12324, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Christoffersen, Peter F, 1998. "Evaluating Interval Forecasts," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(4), pages 841-62, November.
  9. Chib, Siddhartha, 1998. "Estimation and comparison of multiple change-point models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 86(2), pages 221-241, June.
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