DP9191 Can we use seasonally adjusted indicators in dynamic factor models?

Author(s): Maximo Camacho, Yuliya Lovcha, Gabriel Pérez-Quirós
Publication Date: October 2012
Keyword(s): factor models, seasonal adjustment, short-term forecasting
JEL(s): C22, E27, E32
Programme Areas: International Macroeconomics
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=9191

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 indicators before estimating the dynamic factor 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.