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Predicting U.S. Recessions: Financial Variables as Leading Indicators

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  • Arturo Estrella
  • Frederic S. Mishkin

Abstract

This article examines the performance of various financial variables as predictors of subsequent U.S. recessions. Series such as interest rates and spreads, stock prices, currencies, and monetary aggregates are evaluated singly and in comparison with other financial and non-financial indicators. The analysis focuses on out-of-sample performance from 1 to 8 quarters ahead. Results show that stock prices are useful with 1-2 quarter horizons, as are some well-known macroeconomic indicators. Beyond 2 quarters, the slope of the yield curve emerges as the clear choice, and typically performs better by itself out of sample than in conjunction with other variables.

Suggested Citation

  • Arturo Estrella & Frederic S. Mishkin, 1995. "Predicting U.S. Recessions: Financial Variables as Leading Indicators," NBER Working Papers 5379, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:5379
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods

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