12 avr 2013
A note on the cyclical behaviour of the income distribution
Empirically, the income share is procyclical for the low-income groups and acyclical for the top 5%. To generate this kind of behaviour in a DGE business cycle model, we consider overlapping generations and elastic labour supply in addition to those elements considered by Castañeda et al. (1998). We also analyse a model with rigid wages. However, these features do not help to constitute a major improvement vis-a-vis their model.
JEL classification: C68, D31, E32
Keywords: Income distribution, business cycle, overlapping generations, unemployment, pensions
12 avr 2013
Extracting GDP signals from the monthly indicator of economic activity
Real-time data are analysed for information on the Chilean monthly economic activity indicator IMACEC and what it indicates of the final GDP, defined as the growth rate that has been subject to at least two annual revisions. Data are presented and revisions analysed briefly. Mincer-Zarnowitz tests suggest that forecast rationality is rejected with respect to the three-month IMACEC growth rate as a nowcast of the first released quarterly GDP, as well as the first published GDP as a nowcast of the final GDP.
An out-of-sample nowcasting analysis was conducted using only data which were available in real-time. The results show that small models nowcast better than less parsimonious ones. The evidence from the empirical study suggests no improvement in the nowcasting performance when historical data are supplemented with the first monthly IMACEC of the quarter. On the other hand, when two monthly observations IMACEC are available, the root mean squared nowcast error (RMSNE) decreases by 24%, and a further decline of 33% is obtained when the third monthly observation of the quarter is published. Both of these advances are statistically significant. No further improvement is obtained with the publication of the first release of the quarterly GDP.
JEL classifications: C89, E17
Keywords: Real-time data, data revisions, nowcasting
10 avr 2013
Constructing coincident and leading indices of economic activity for the Brazilian economy
João Victor Issler, Hilton Hostalacio Notini, Claudia Fontoura Rodrigues
This paper has three original contributions. The first is the reconstruction effort of the series of employment and income to allow the creation of a new coincident index for the Brazilian economic activity. The second is the construction of a coincident index of the economic activity for Brazil, and from it, (re) establish a chronology of recessions in the recent past of the Brazilian economy. The coincident index follows the methodology proposed by The Conference Board (TCB) and it covers the period 1980:1 to 2007:11. The third is the construction and evaluation of many leading indicators of economic activity for Brazil which fills an important gap in the Brazilian Business-Cycle literature.
Keywords: Coincident and Leading Indicators, Business Cycles, Common Features, Latent Factor Analysis
JEL codes: C32, E32
18 mars 2013
Day-of-the-week effect in Consumer Confidence Index
Sadullah Çelik, Hüseyin Kaya
The aim of this study is to examine the validity of the day-of-the-week effect on both mean and volatility for changes in Consumer Confidence Index in Turkey. To the best of our knowledge, there is no previous study on this topic for an emerging market. Employing the E-GARCH method, we are able to validate day-of-the-week effect both in mean and volatility of the daily changes in the Consumer Confidence Index. In our findings, the mean equation exhibits only a Friday effect and the lowest volatility is also observed for Friday. Additionally, we use nonparametric stochastic dominance (SD) approach by employing several SD tests and verify the existence of Friday effects.
13 mars 2013
Do business tendency surveys help in forecasting employment?
This study investigates the usefulness of business tendency surveys collected at the KOF Swiss Economic Institute and aggregated in the form of the KOF Employment Indicator for short-term forecasting of employment in Switzerland. We use a real-time dataset in order to simulate the actual predictive process using only information that was available at the time when predictions were made. We evaluate the predictive content of the KOF Employment Indicator both for nowcasts that are published two months before the first official release, and for one-quarter ahead forecasts published five months before the first official release. We find that inclusion of the KOF Employment Indicator leads to a substantial improvement in prediction accuracy of both point and density forecasts compared to the performance of a benchmark autoregressive model.
06 mars 2013
Heuristic model selection for leading indicators in Russia and Germany
Ivan Savin, Peter Winker
Business tendency survey indicators are widely recognised as a key instrument for business cycle forecasting. Their leading indicator property is assessed with regard to forecasting industrial production in Russia and Germany. For this purpose, vector autoregressive (VAR) models are specified and estimated to construct forecasts. As the potential number of lags included is large, we compare full-specified VAR models with subset models obtained using a Genetic Algorithm enabling "holes" in multivariate lag structures. The problem is complicated by the fact that a structural break and seasonal variation of indicators have to be taken into account. The models allow for a comparison of the dynamic adjustment and the forecasting performance of the leading indicators for both countries revealing marked differences between Russia and Germany.
JEL classification: C52, C61, E37
Keywords: Leading indicators, business cycle forecasts, VAR, model selection, genetic algorithms
23 nov 2012
Measuring capacity utilisation in the italian manufacturing sector
Marco Malgarini, Antonio Paradiso
The aim of this paper is to provide an interpretation of the measure of capacity utilisation provided by the European Union harmonised survey on the Italian manufacturing sector. In doing so, we evaluate its ability to correctly track cyclical turning points and its contribution in explaining consumer price index (CPI) inflation. The survey based measure results are a good co-incident indicator of business cycle, however it is generally outperformed by time series models in explaining inflation. We conclude that the standard "output gap" interpretation of the survey results is broadly confirmed by the data, however we cannot rule out at this stage that survey respondents may also consider the alternative "variable capacity utilisation" concept in answering the survey question.
Keywords: Capacity utilisation, co-integration, unobserved component models, VAR.
JEL Classification: E32, C22, E37