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Using Internet Data to Account for Special Events in Economic Forecasting

  • Torsten Schmidt

    ()

  • Simeon Vosen

Information about special events can improve economic forecasts substantially. However, due to the lack of timely quantitative data about these events, it has been difficult for professional forecasters to utilise such information in their forecasts. This paper investigates whether Internet search data can improve economic predictions in times of special events. An analysis of “cash for clunkers” programs in four selected countries exemplifies that including search query data into statistical forecasting models improves the forecasting performance in almost all cases. However, the challenge to identify irregular events and to find the appropriate time series from Google Insights for search remains.

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File URL: http://repec.rwi-essen.de/files/REP_12_382.pdf
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Paper provided by Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen in its series Ruhr Economic Papers with number 0382.

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Length: 15 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:rwi:repape:0382
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  1. Scott Baker & Andrey Fradkin, 2011. "What Drives Job Search? Evidence from Google Search Data," Discussion Papers 10-020, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  2. Goodwin, Paul, 2000. "Correct or combine? Mechanically integrating judgmental forecasts with statistical methods," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 261-275.
  3. Fildes, Robert & Stekler, Herman, 2002. "The state of macroeconomic forecasting," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 435-468, December.
  4. Fildes, Robert & Stekler, Herman, 2002. "Reply to the comments on 'The state of macroeconomic forecasting'," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 503-505, December.
  5. Vlastakis, Nikolaos & Markellos, Raphael N., 2012. "Information demand and stock market volatility," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 36(6), pages 1808-1821.
  6. D'Amuri, Francesco/FD & Marcucci, Juri/JM, 2009. ""Google it!" Forecasting the US unemployment rate with a Google job search index," MPRA Paper 18248, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  7. Adda, Jérôme & Cooper, Russell W., 1997. "Balladurette and jupette: a discrete analysis of scrapping subsidies," CEPREMAP Working Papers (Couverture Orange) 9711, CEPREMAP.
  8. Simeon Vosen & Torsten Schmidt, 2012. "A monthly consumption indicator for Germany based on Internet search query data," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(7), pages 683-687, May.
  9. Torsten Schmidt & Simeon Vosen, 2009. "Forecasting Private Consumption: Survey-based Indicators vs. Google Trends," Ruhr Economic Papers 0155, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
  10. Graeme Chamberlin, 2010. "Googling the present," Economic and Labour Market Review, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 4(12), pages 59-95, December.
  11. Nikos Askitas & Klaus F. Zimmermann, 2009. "Google Econometrics and Unemployment Forecasting," Research Notes of the German Council for Social and Economic Data 41, German Council for Social and Economic Data (RatSWD).
  12. Lawrence, Michael & Goodwin, Paul & O'Connor, Marcus & Onkal, Dilek, 2006. "Judgmental forecasting: A review of progress over the last 25 years," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 493-518.
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