Conditional Macroeconomic Forecasts: Disagreement, Revisions and Forecast Errors
IWH Discussion Papers,
Using data from the European Central Bank‘s Survey of Professional Forecasters, we analyse the role of ex-ante conditioning variables for macroeconomic forecasts. In particular, we test to which extent the heterogeneity, updating and ex-post performance of predictions for inflation, real GDP growth and the unemployment rate are related to assumptions about future oil prices, exchange rates, interest rates and wage growth. Our findings indicate that inflation forecasts are closely associated with oil price expectations, whereas expected interest rates are used primarily to predict output growth and unemployment. Expectations about exchange rates and wage growth also matter for macroeconomic forecasts, albeit less so than oil prices and interest rates. We show that survey participants can considerably improve forecast accuracy for macroeconomic outcomes by reducing prediction errors for external conditions. Our results contribute to a better understanding of the expectation formation process of experts.
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11.04.2017 • 18/2017
The state as a pioneering customer: How public demand can drive private innovation
Especially in technology-intensive industries, demand from the state can expand private markets and create incentives for privately funded research and development, a new study by the Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH) – Member of the Leibniz Association shows.
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Agglomeration and FDI in East German Knowledge-intensive Business Services
The focus of this article is the empirical identification of factors influencing Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the knowledge-intensive business service (KIBS) sector on the regional level of «Raumordnungsregionen» in East Germany. The analysis focuses on the impact of regional agglomeration and technological capability on the location decision of foreign investors and West German MNEs. It shows that localisation, patent activity and the share of employees with an R&D occupation affect significantly the location decision of FDI. This result provides an explanation for the strong concentration of KIBS in urban areas in a post-transition economy.