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Forecasting for Inventory Control with Exponential Smoothing

  • Snyder, R.D.
  • Koehler, A.
  • Ord, K.

Exponential smoothing, often used for sales forecasting in inventory control, has always been rationalized in terms of statistical models that possess errors with constant variances. It is shown in this paper that exponential smoothing remains the appropriate approach under more general conditions where the variances are allowed to grow and contract with corresponding movements in the underlying level. The implications for estimation and prediction are explored. In particular the problem of finding the prediction distribution of aggregate lead- time demand for use in inventory control calculations is considered. It is found that unless a drift term is added to simple exponential smoothing, the prediction distribution is largely unaffected by the variance assumption. A method for establishing order-up-to levels and reorder levels directly from the simulated prediction distributions is also proposed.

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File URL: http://www.buseco.monash.edu.au/ebs/pubs/wpapers/1999/wp10-99.pdf
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Paper provided by Monash University, Department of Econometrics and Business Statistics in its series Monash Econometrics and Business Statistics Working Papers with number 10/99.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: Aug 1999
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:msh:ebswps:1999-10
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  1. P. J. Harrison, 1967. "Exponential Smoothing and Short-Term Sales Forecasting," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 13(11), pages 821-842, July.
  2. Snyder, R.D. & Koehler, A.B. & Ord, J.K., 1998. "Lead Time demand for Simple Exponential Smoothing," Monash Econometrics and Business Statistics Working Papers 13/98, Monash University, Department of Econometrics and Business Statistics.
  3. Harvey, Andrew & Snyder, Ralph D., 1990. "Structural time series models in inventory control," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 6(2), pages 187-198, July.
  4. Koehler, A.B. & Snyder, R.D. & Ord, J.K., 1999. "Forecasting Models and Prediction Intervals for the Multiplicative Holt-Winters Method," Monash Econometrics and Business Statistics Working Papers 1/99, Monash University, Department of Econometrics and Business Statistics.
  5. Peter R. Winters, 1960. "Forecasting Sales by Exponentially Weighted Moving Averages," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 6(3), pages 324-342, April.
  6. William S. Lovejoy, 1990. "Myopic Policies for Some Inventory Models with Uncertain Demand Distributions," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 36(6), pages 724-738, June.
  7. Ord, J.K. & Koehler, A. & Snyder, R.D., 1995. "Estimation and Prediction for a Class of Dynamic Nonlinear Statistical Models," Monash Econometrics and Business Statistics Working Papers 4/95, Monash University, Department of Econometrics and Business Statistics.
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