Forecasting UK GDP growth, inflation and interest rates under structural change: a comparison of models with time-varying parameters

Working papers set out research in progress by our staff, with the aim of encouraging comments and debate.
Published on 18 May 2012

Working Paper No. 450
By Alina Barnett, Haroon Mumtaz and Konstantinos Theodoridis 

Evidence from a large and growing empirical literature strongly suggests that there have been changes in inflation and output dynamics in the United Kingdom. This is largely based on a class of econometric models that allow for time-variation in coefficients and volatilities of shocks. While these have been used extensively to study evolving dynamics and for structural analysis, there is little evidence on their usefulness in forecasting UK output growth, inflation and the short-term interest rate. This paper attempts to fill this gap by comparing the performance of a wide variety of time-varying parameter models in forecasting output growth, inflation and a short rate. We find that allowing for time-varying parameters can lead to large and statistically significant gains in forecast accuracy.

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