Do Forecasters Inform or Reassure? Evaluation of the German Real-Time Data
Konstantin A. Kholodilin
German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin)
German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) - Department of International Economics
February 2, 2009
KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich, KOF Working Paper No. 215
DIW Berlin Discussion Paper No. 858
The paper evaluates the quality of the German national accounting data (GDP and its use-side components) as measured by the magnitude and dispersion of the forecast/revision errors. It is demonstrated that government consumption series are the least reliable, whereas real GDP and real private consumption data are the most reliable. In addition, early forecasts of GDP, private consumption, and investment growth rates are shown to be systematically upward biased. Finally, early forecasts of all the variables seem to be no more accurate than naive forecasts based on the historical mean of the final data.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 29
Keywords: Quality of statistical data, real-time data, signal-to-noise ratio, forecasts, revisions
JEL Classification: C53, C89working papers series
Date posted: March 18, 2009 ; Last revised: July 8, 2009
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