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The Relationship Between Forecast Dispersion and Forecast Uncertainty: Evidence from a Survey Data--ARCH Model

R. W. Rich, J. E. Raymond and J. S. Butler
Journal of Applied Econometrics
Vol. 7, No. 2 (Apr. - Jun., 1992), pp. 131-148
Published by: Wiley
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2285024
Page Count: 18
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The Relationship Between Forecast Dispersion and Forecast Uncertainty: Evidence from a Survey Data--ARCH Model
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Abstract

This paper examines empirically the relationship between measures of forecast dispersion and forecast uncertainty from data on inflation expectations from the Livingston survey series and the Survey Research Center (SRC) survey series. Because the survey series do not provide probabilistic forecasts of inflation, we derive measures of inflation uncertainty by modelling the conditional variance of the inflation forecast errors from the survey series as an autoregressive conditional heteroscedastic (ARCH) process. The analysis is complicated by the fact that the overlap of forecast horizons for the survey series does not preclude the model's disturbance terms from displaying autocorrelation, and also places a restriction on the specification for the ARCH measures of inflation uncertainty. We estimate the model using Hansen's (1982) generalized method of moments (GMM) procedure to account for the presence of serial correlation and conditional heteroscedasticity in the disturbance terms. The results generally support the hypothesis that the measures of forecast dispersion across survey respondents are positively and statistically significantly associated with the measures of inflation uncertainty. However, the appropriateness of using forecast dispersion measures as proxies for inflation uncertainty is sensitive to the choice of the survey series.

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