An Empirical Analysis of the Canadian Budget Process
This paper provides a statistical analysis of the forecasts of a significant number of expenditure and revenue components of the federal budget provided each year by the Department of Finance. The sample available for such an investigation is limited, and the authors describe an easily applied non-parametric testing methodology that is more appropriate than the usual regression-based approach in small samples. The reliability and relative power of the various non-parametric tests are illustrated in a series of simulations. Applying these tests to the fiscal forecasts, they find that there is little cause to be concerned with the forecast performance of the Department of Finance over the last seventeen years.
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