OECD Statistics Working Papers

The OECD Statistics Working Paper Series - managed by the OECD Statistics and Data Directorate – is designed to make available in a timely fashion and to a wider readership selected studies prepared by staff in the Secretariat or by outside consultants working on OECD projects. The papers included are of a technical, methodological or statistical policy nature and relate to statistical work relevant to the organisation. The Working Papers are generally available only in their original language - English or French - with a summary in the other.

Joint Working Papers:

Measuring Well-being and Progress in Countries at Different Stages of Development: Towards a More Universal Conceptual Framework (with OECD Development Centre)

Measuring and Assessing Job Quality: The OECD Job Quality Framework (with OECD Directorate for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs)

Forecasting GDP during and after the Great Recession: A contest between small-scale bridge and large-scale dynamic factor models (with OECD Economics Directorate)

Decoupling of wages from productivity: Macro-level facts (with OECD Economics Directorate)

Which policies increase value for money in health care? (with OECD Directorate for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs)

Compiling mineral and energy resource accounts according to the System of Environmental-Economic Accounting (SEEA) 2012 (with OECD Environment Directorate)


Business cycle dynamics after the Great Recession

An extended Markov-Switching Dynamic Factor Model

The Great Recession and the subsequent period of subdued GDP growth in most advanced economies have highlighted the need for macroeconomic forecasters to account for sudden and deep recessions, periods of higher macroeconomic volatility, and fluctuations in trend GDP growth. In this paper, we put forward an extension of the standard Markov-Switching Dynamic Factor Model (MS-DFM) by incorporating two new features: switches in volatility and time-variation in trend GDP growth. First, we show that volatility switches largely improve the detection of business cycle turning points in the low-volatility environment prevailing since the mid-1980s. It is an important result for the detection of future recessions since, according to our model, the US economy is now back to a low-volatility environment after an interruption during the Great Recession. Second, our model also captures a continuous decline in the US trend GDP growth that started a few years before the Great Recession and continued thereafter. These two extensions of the standard MS-DFM framework are supported by information criteria, marginal likelihood comparisons and improved real-time GDP forecasting performance.


Keywords: Great Moderation, Markov-Switching Dynamic Factor Model (MS-DFM), Great Recession, Turning-Point Detection, Macroeconomic Forecasting
JEL: C51: Mathematical and Quantitative Methods / Econometric Modeling / Model Construction and Estimation; E37: Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics / Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles / Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles: Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications; C22: Mathematical and Quantitative Methods / Single Equation Models; Single Variables / Single Equation Models; Single Variables: Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; E32: Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics / Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles / Business Fluctuations; Cycles
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error