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The Properties of Market-Based and Survey Forecasts for Different Data Releases

Lanne, Markku (2007): The Properties of Market-Based and Survey Forecasts for Different Data Releases.

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Abstract

We compare the accuracy of the survey forecasts and forecasts implied by economic binary options on the U.S. nonfarm payroll change. These options are available for a number of ranges of the announced figure, and each pays $1 if the released nonfarm payroll change falls in the given range. For the first-release data both the market-based and survey forecasts are biased, while they are rational and approximately equally accurate for later releases. Both forecasts are more accurate for later releases. Because of predictability in the revision process, this indicates that the investors in the economic derivatives market are incapable of taking the measurement error in the preliminary estimates efficiently into account. This suggests that economic stability could be enhanced by more accurate first-release figures.

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