Innovation Activities and Business Cycles: Are Trademarks a Leading Indicator?

41 Pages Posted: 26 Jul 2019 Last revised: 23 Sep 2019

See all articles by Charles deGrazia

Charles deGrazia

University of London - Royal Holloway College; USPTO

Amanda Myers

United States Patent and Trademark Office

Andrew A. Toole

US Patent and Trademark Office

Date Written: July 2019

Abstract

Despite the widespread use of economic information to anticipate changes in business conditions, innovation metrics are not considered to be leading indicators. We argue that aggregate trademark data reflect firm-level choices that can help predict business cycles. In addition to establishing the conceptual basis for considering trademarks, our statistical evaluations, using turning point analysis and a novel machine learning method, find that trademark filings for product and service offerings in commercial use outperform many of the conventional leading indicators. Our work suggests that including trademark metrics in composite indexes could improve recession forecasting performance.

Keywords: trademark, leading economic indicator, innovation

JEL Classification: O3, O31, O32, O47, C52, C53

Suggested Citation

deGrazia, Charles and Myers, Amanda and Toole, Andrew A., Innovation Activities and Business Cycles: Are Trademarks a Leading Indicator? (July 2019). USPTO Economic Working Paper No. 2019-04, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3426202 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3426202

Charles DeGrazia

University of London - Royal Holloway College ( email )

Senate House
Malet Street
London, TW20 0EX
United Kingdom

USPTO ( email )

Amanda Myers

United States Patent and Trademark Office ( email )

Alexandria
VA 22313-1451
United States

Andrew A. Toole (Contact Author)

US Patent and Trademark Office ( email )

Alexandria
VA 22313-1451
United States

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