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Author:Schorfheide, Frank 

Working Paper
Evaluating DSGE model forecasts of comovements

This paper develops and applies tools to assess multivariate aspects of Bayesian Dynamic Stochastic General Equilibrium (DSGE) model forecasts and their ability to predict comovements among key macroeconomic variables. We construct posterior predictive checks to evaluate conditional and unconditional density forecasts, in addition to checks for root-mean-squared errors and event probabilities associated with these forecasts. The checks are implemented on a three-equation DSGE model as well as the Smets and Wouters (2007) model using real-time data. We find that the additional features ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2012-11

Working Paper
Improving GDP measurement: a measurement-error perspective

We provide a new and superior measure of U.S. GDP, obtained by applying optimal signal-extraction techniques to the (noisy) expenditure-side and income-side estimates. Its properties -- particularly as regards serial correlation -- differ markedly from those of the standard expenditure-side measure and lead to substantially-revised views regarding the properties of GDP.
Working Papers , Paper 13-16

Discussion Paper
Online Estimation of DSGE Models

The estimation of dynamic stochastic general equilibrium (DSGE) models is a computationally demanding task. As these models change to address new challenges (such as household and firm heterogeneity, the lower bound on nominal interest rates, and occasionally binding financial constraints), they become even more complex and difficult to estimate?so much so that current estimation procedures are no longer up to the task. This post discusses a new technique for estimating these models which belongs to the class of sequential Monte Carlo (SMC) algorithms, an approach we employ to estimate the ...
Liberty Street Economics , Paper 20190821

Working Paper
Macroeconomic Dynamics Near the ZLB : A Tale of Two Countries

We compute a sunspot equilibrium in an estimated small-scale New Keynesian model with a zero lower bound (ZLB) constraint on nominal interest rates and a full set of stochastic fundamental shocks. In this equilibrium a sunspot shock can move the economy from a regime in which inflation is close to the central bank's target to a regime in which the central bank misses its target, inflation rates are negative, and interest rates are close to zero with high probability. A nonlinear filter is used to examine whether the U.S. in the aftermath of the Great Recession and Japan in the late 1990s ...
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 1163

Journal Article
How good is what you've got? DSGE-VAR as a toolkit for evaluating DSGE models

In the constant search for better models to help guide policy decisions, central banks have begun to use and develop dynamic stochastic general equilibrium (DSGE) models. Although such models were until recently considered theoretically sound but overly restrictive, newly developed methods have proved successful in specifying DSGE models that fit the macroeconomic data well. ; Policy institutions that use DSGE models in policymaking need a reliable method for evaluating the models? effectiveness. This article reviews a procedure recently proposed by the authors and their colleagues. The ...
Economic Review , Volume 91 , Issue Q 2 , Pages 21-37

Working Paper
Piecewise-Linear Approximations and Filtering for DSGE Models with Occasionally Binding Constraints

We develop an algorithm to construct approximate decision rules that are piecewise-linear and continuous for DSGE models with an occasionally binding constraint. The functional form of the decision rules allows us to derive a conditionally optimal particle filter (COPF) for the evaluation of the likelihood function that exploits the structure of the solution. We document the accuracy of the likelihood approximation and embed it into a particle Markov chain Monte Carlo algorithm to conduct Bayesian estimation. Compared with a standard bootstrap particle filter, the COPF significantly reduces ...
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 1272

Discussion Paper
Choosing the Right Policy in Real Time (Why That’s Not Easy)

As an economist, you make policy recommendations at any point in time that depend on what model of the economy you have in mind and on your assessment of the state of the economy. One can see these points play out in the current discussion about the timing of interest rate liftoff and the speed of the subsequent renormalization. If you think nominal rigidities are not all that important, you are likely to conclude that accommodative policies won’t do much for growth but will generate inflation. Similarly, if you are convinced that the economy is already firing on all cylinders, you may see ...
Liberty Street Economics , Paper 20150325

Report
Dynamic prediction pools: an investigation of financial frictions and forecasting performance

We provide a novel methodology for estimating time-varying weights in linear prediction pools, which we call dynamic pools, and use it to investigate the relative forecasting performance of dynamic stochastic general equilibrium (DSGE) models, with and without financial frictions, for output growth and inflation in the period 1992 to 2011. We find strong evidence of time variation in the pool?s weights, reflecting the fact that the DSGE model with financial frictions produces superior forecasts in periods of financial distress but doesn?t perform as well in tranquil periods. The dynamic ...
Staff Reports , Paper 695

Working Paper
Sequential Monte Carlo sampling for DSGE models

We develop a sequential Monte Carlo (SMC) algorithm for estimating Bayesian dynamic stochastic general equilibrium (DSGE) models, wherein a particle approximation to the posterior is built iteratively through tempering the likelihood. Using three examples--an artificial state-space model, the Smets and Wouters (2007) model, and Schmitt-Grohe and Uribe's (2012) news shock model--we show that the SMC algorithm is better suited for multimodal and irregular posterior distributions than the widely-used random-walk Metropolis-Hastings algorithm. We find that a more diffuse prior for the Smets and ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2013-43

Working Paper
Bayesian analysis of DSGE models

This paper reviews Bayesian methods that have been developed in recent years to estimate and evaluate dynamic stochastic general equilibrium (DSGE) models. We consider the estimation of linearized DSGE models, the evaluation of models based on Bayesian model checking, posterior odds comparisons, and comparisons to vector autoregressions, as well as the nonlinear estimation based on a second-order accurate model solution. These methods are applied to data generated from correctly specified and misspecified linearized DSGE models, and a DSGE model that was solved with a second-order ...
Working Papers , Paper 06-5

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