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An analysis of the informational content of New Zealand data releases: the importance of business opinion surveys

We examine the informational content of New Zealand data releases using a parametric dynamic factor model estimated with unbalanced real-time panels of quarterly data. The data are categorised into 21 different release blocks, allowing us to make 21 different factor model forecasts each quarter. We compare three of these factor model forecasts for real GDP growth, CPI inflation, non-tradable CPI inflation, and tradable CPI inflation with real-time forecasts made by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand each quarter. We find that, at some horizons, the factor model produce forecasts of similar accuracy to the Reserve Bank’s forecasts. Analysing the marginal value of each of the data releases reveals the importance of the business opinion survey data – the Quarterly Survey of Business Opinion and the National Bank’s Business Outlook survey – in determining how factor model predictions, and the uncertainty around those predictions, evolves through each quarter.

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Paper provided by Reserve Bank of New Zealand in its series Reserve Bank of New Zealand Discussion Paper Series with number DP2007/13.

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Length: 50 p.
Date of creation: Sep 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:nzb:nzbdps:2007/13
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  3. Giannone, Domenico & Reichlin, Lucrezia & Small, David, 2005. "Nowcasting GDP and Inflation: The Real Time Informational Content of Macroeconomic Data Releases," CEPR Discussion Papers 5178, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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    • Domenico Giannone & Lucrezia Reichlin & Luca Sala, 2005. "Monetary Policy in Real Time," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2004, Volume 19, pages 161-224 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  7. Kenneth D. West, 1994. "Asymptotic Inference About Predictive Ability," Macroeconomics 9410002, EconWPA.
  8. Lloyd B. Thomas, 1999. "Survey Measures of Expected U.S. Inflation," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 13(4), pages 125-144, Fall.
  9. Andrew Ang & Geert Bekaert & Min Wei, 2005. "Do Macro Variables, Asset Markets or Surveys Forecast Inflation Better?," NBER Working Papers 11538, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Catherine Doz & Lucrezia Reichlin, 2011. "A two-step estimator for large approximate dynamic factor models based on Kalman filtering," Post-Print hal-00844811, HAL.
  11. Diebold, Francis X & Mariano, Roberto S, 2002. "Comparing Predictive Accuracy," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(1), pages 134-44, January.
  12. Boivin, Jean & Ng, Serena, 2006. "Are more data always better for factor analysis?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 132(1), pages 169-194, May.
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