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Evaluating a three-dimensional panel of point forecasts : the Bank of England survey of external forecasters

By Gianna Boero, Jeremy Smith and Kenneth Frank Wallis


This article provides a first analysis of the forecasts of inflation and GDP growth obtained from the Bank of England's Survey of External Forecasters, considering both the survey average forecasts published in the quarterly Inflation Report, and the individual survey responses, recently made available by the Bank. These comprise a conventional incomplete panel dataset, with an additional dimension arising from the collection of forecasts at several horizons; both point forecasts and density forecasts are collected. The inflation forecasts show good performance in tests of unbiasedness and efficiency, albeit over a relatively calm period for the UK economy, and there is considerable individual heterogeneity. For GDP growth, inaccurate real-time data and their subsequent revisions are seen to cause serious difficulties for forecast construction and evaluation, although the forecasts are again unbiased. There is evidence that some forecasters have asymmetric loss functions

Topics: HC, HJ
Publisher: Elsevier
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