Comparing Macroeconomic Model Forecasts under Common Assumptions
Economic forecasts differ because forecasters use different macroeconomic models. However, even if everyone used the same model, all forecasts would not be identical. Most forecasts reflect a complex interaction among three elements. Unfortunately, little is known about the relative importance of these elements. This chapter addresses three kinds of question. The initial stage of the Model Comparison Seminar's project, starting in early 1986, has been the collection of relevant data, a laborious and time-consuming part of the project. The following results are a preliminary report on an ongoing effort. The conclusions, based on the limited experience so far, must be regarded as highly tentative. Any success that has been achieved should be largely credited to the modelers who participated in this exercise. This chapter compares model solutions based on different sets of conditioning information. In general, a model can be thought of as a conditional statement about the relationship between inputs (Xs) and outputs (Ys), or Y = f(X).
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