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Federal Reserve information during the great moderation

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  • Karl Whelan
  • Antonello D'Agostino

Abstract

Using data from the period 1970-1991, Romer and Romer (2000) showed that Federal Reserve forecasts of inflation and output were superior to those provided by commercial forecasters. In this paper, we show that this superior forecasting performance deteriorated after 1991. Over the decade 1992-2001, the superior forecast accuracy of the Fed held only over a very short time horizon and was limited to its forecasts of inflation. In addition, the performance of both the Fed and the commercial forecasters in predicting inflation and output, relative to that of “naive” benchmark models, dropped remarkably during this period.

Suggested Citation

  • Karl Whelan & Antonello D'Agostino, 2008. "Federal Reserve information during the great moderation," Open Access publications 10197/252, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucn:oapubs:10197/252
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10197/252
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    8. Peter Tulip, 2005. "Has output become more predictable? changes in Greenbook forecast accuracy," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2005-31, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
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    Cited by:

    1. El-Shagi, Makram & Giesen, Sebastian & Jung, Alexander, 2016. "Revisiting the relative forecast performances of Fed staff and private forecasters: A dynamic approach," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 313-323.
    2. El-Shagi, Makram, 2019. "Rationality tests in the presence of instabilities in finite samples," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 79(C), pages 242-246.
    3. repec:spo:wpmain:info:hdl:2441/3pot7260lh88lrfhrhvs85lh2f is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Paul Hubert, 2015. "Revisiting the Greenbook’s relative forecasting performance," Revue de l'OFCE, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 0(1), pages 151-179.
    5. Carlo Altavilla & Domenico Giannone, 2017. "The Effectiveness of Non‐Standard Monetary Policy Measures: Evidence from Survey Data," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 32(5), pages 952-964, August.
    6. Daniel L. Thornton, 2009. "How did we get to inflation targeting and where do we go now? a perspective from the U.S. experience," Working Papers 2009-038, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
    7. Liebermann, Joelle, 2012. "Real-time forecasting in a data-rich environment," MPRA Paper 39452, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. João Valle e Azevedo, 2011. "Rational vs. professional forecasts," Economic Bulletin and Financial Stability Report Articles and Banco de Portugal Economic Studies, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
    9. Ásgeir Daníelsson, 2008. "The great moderation Icelandic style," Economics wp38, Department of Economics, Central bank of Iceland.
    10. Zidong An & Joao Tovar Jalles, 2020. "On the performance of US fiscal forecasts: government vs. private information," Journal of Economic Studies, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 48(2), pages 367-391, June.
    11. Muto, Ichiro, 2013. "Productivity growth, transparency, and monetary policy," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 329-344.
    12. El-Shagi, Makram & Giesen, Sebastian & Jung, Alexander, 2012. "Does Central Bank Staff Beat Private Forecasters?," IWH Discussion Papers 5/2012, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
    13. Henning Fischer & Marta García-Bárzana & Peter Tillmann & Peter Winker, 2014. "Evaluating FOMC forecast ranges: an interval data approach," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 47(1), pages 365-388, August.
    14. Gamber, Edward N. & Liebner, Jeffrey P. & Smith, Julie K., 2015. "The distribution of inflation forecast errors," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 47-64.
    15. Paul Hubert, 2015. "Do Central Bank Forecasts Influence Private Agents? Forecasting Performance versus Signals," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 47(4), pages 771-789, June.
    16. Jung, Alexander & El-Shagi, Makram & Giesen, Sebastian, 2014. "Does the federal reserve staff still beat private forecasters?," Working Paper Series 1635, European Central Bank.
    17. Ásgeir Daníelsson, 2008. "Accuracy in forecasting macroeconomic variables in Iceland," Economics wp39, Department of Economics, Central bank of Iceland.
    18. Christopher A. Hollrah & Steven A. Sharpe & Nitish R. Sinha, 2017. "What's the Story? A New Perspective on the Value of Economic Forecasts," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2017-107, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    19. Lillian R. Gaeto & Sandeep Mazumder, 2019. "Measuring the Accuracy of Federal Reserve Forecasts," Southern Economic Journal, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 85(3), pages 960-984, January.
    20. Paul Hubert, 2010. "Monetary Policy, Imperfect Information and the Expectations Channel," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/f4rshpf3v1u, Sciences Po.
    21. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/f4rshpf3v1umfa09lat09b1bg is not listed on IDEAS
    22. Ekşi Ozan & Taş Bedri Kamil Onur & Orman Cüneyt, 2017. "Has the forecasting performance of the Federal Reserve’s Greenbooks changed over time?," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 17(2), pages 1-25, June.
    23. Kishor N. Kundan, 2010. "The Superiority of Greenbook Forecasts and the Role of Recessions," NBP Working Papers 74, Narodowy Bank Polski, Economic Research Department.
    24. Christopher A. Hollrah & Steven A. Sharpe & Nitish R. Sinha, 2020. "The Power of Narratives in Economic Forecasts," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2020-001, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    25. Yoichi Tsuchiya, 2021. "The value added of the Bank of Japan's range forecasts," Journal of Forecasting, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 40(5), pages 817-833, August.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.); Inflation (Finance); Economic forecasting;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

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

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