Can we use seasonally adjusted variables in dynamic factor models?

Maximo Camacho 1 , Yuliya Lovcha 2 , and Gabriel Perez Quiros 3
  • 1 Universidad de Murcia, Facultad de Economia y Empresa, Departamento de Metodos Cuantitativos para la Economia y la Empresa, 30100, Murcia, Spain
  • 2 Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Departmento de Economia, Av. Universitat, 1, 43204 Reus, Spain
  • 3 Banco de España and CEPR. Calle Alcalá 48, 28014 Madrid, Spain
Maximo Camacho, Yuliya Lovcha and Gabriel Perez Quiros

Abstract

We examine the short-term performance of two alternative approaches of forecasting from dynamic factor models. The first approach extracts the seasonal component of the individual variables before estimating the model, while the alternative uses the non seasonally adjusted data in a model that endogenously accounts for seasonal adjustment. Our Monte Carlo analysis reveals that the performance of the former is always comparable to or even better than that of the latter in all the simulated scenarios. Our results have important implications for the factor models literature because they show the that the common practice of using seasonally adjusted data in this type of models is very accurate in terms of forecasting ability. Using five coincident indicators, we illustrate this result for US data.

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