Economic Indicators for the US Transportation Sector
Transportation Research A: Policy and Practice, Vol. 40, No. 10, 2006
Posted: 13 May 2008
Since the transportation sector plays an important role in business cycle propagation, we develop indicators for this sector to identify its current state, and predict its future. We define the reference cycle, including both business and growth cycles, for this sector over the period from 1979 using both the conventional National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) method and modern time series models. A one-to-one correspondence between cycles in the transportation sector and those in the aggregate economy is found; however, both business and growth cycles of transportation often start earlier and end later than those of the overall economy. We also construct an index of leading indicators for the transportation sector using rigorous statistical procedures, and is found to perform well as a forecasting tool.
Keywords: Transportation, Business cycles, Leading indicators, Index of concordance, Dynamic factor models
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