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A real-time analysis on the importance of hard and soft data for nowcasting German GDP

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  • Heinisch, Katja

Abstract

In this paper we reexamine the relative role of soft and hard data in terms of short-term GDP forecasting. We employ mixed frequency models (MF-VARS) and real-time data to investigate the relative role of survey data relative to industrial production and orders in Germany. Special emphasis is given to the real-time data flow of surveys, production and orders. Although we find evidence that the forecast characteristics based on real-time and final data releases differ, we see only little impact on the relative forecasting performance of indicator models. However, when it comes to optimally combine soft and hard data, the use of final release data may understate the relative role of survey information.

Suggested Citation

  • Heinisch, Katja, 2016. "A real-time analysis on the importance of hard and soft data for nowcasting German GDP," VfS Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145864, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:vfsc16:145864
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Richard Luger, 2004. "Exact Tests of Equal Forecast Accuracy with an Application to the Term Structure of Interest Rates," Staff Working Papers 04-2, Bank of Canada.
    2. Kholodilin Konstantin Arkadievich & Siliverstovs Boriss, 2006. "On the Forecasting Properties of the Alternative Leading Indicators for the German GDP: Recent Evidence," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 226(3), pages 234-259, June.
    3. Frank Schorfheide & Dongho Song, 2015. "Real-Time Forecasting With a Mixed-Frequency VAR," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(3), pages 366-380, July.
    4. Bańbura, Marta & Giannone, Domenico & Modugno, Michele & Reichlin, Lucrezia, 2013. "Now-Casting and the Real-Time Data Flow," Handbook of Economic Forecasting, in: G. Elliott & C. Granger & A. Timmermann (ed.),Handbook of Economic Forecasting, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 0, pages 195-237, Elsevier.
    5. repec:zbw:iwhdps:7-13 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Thomas A. Knetsch & Hans‐Eggert Reimers, 2009. "Dealing with Benchmark Revisions in Real‐Time Data: The Case of German Production and Orders Statistics," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 71(2), pages 209-235, April.
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    9. Christian Dreger & Christian Schumacher, 2005. "Out-of-sample Performance of Leading Indicators for the German Business Cycle: Single vs. Combined Forecasts," Journal of Business Cycle Measurement and Analysis, OECD Publishing, Centre for International Research on Economic Tendency Surveys, vol. 2005(1), pages 71-87.
    10. Katja Heinisch & Rolf Scheufele, 2018. "Bottom-up or direct? Forecasting German GDP in a data-rich environment," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 54(2), pages 705-745, March.
    11. Foroni, Claudia & Marcellino, Massimiliano, 2014. "A comparison of mixed frequency approaches for nowcasting Euro area macroeconomic aggregates," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 554-568.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods
    • E37 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications
    • C32 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; State Space Models

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