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A new approach to dating the reference cycle

Maximo Camacho (), María Gadea () and Ana Gómez-Loscos ()

No 1914, Working Papers from Banco de España

Abstract: This paper proposes a new approach to the analysis of the reference cycle turning points, defined on the basis of the specific turning points of a broad set of coincident economic indicators. Each individual pair of specific peaks and troughs from these indicators is viewed as a realization of a mixture of an unspecified number of separate bivariate Gaussian distributions whose different means are the reference turning points. These dates break the sample into separate reference cycle phases, whose shifts are modeled by a hidden Markov chain. The transition probability matrix is constrained so that the specification is equivalent to a multiple changepoint model. Bayesian estimation of finite Markov mixture modeling techniques is suggested to estimate the model. Several Monte Carlo experiments are used to show the accuracy of the model to date reference cycles that suffer from short phases, uncertain turning points, small samples and asymmetric cycles. In the empirical section, we show the high performance of our approach to identifying the US reference cycle, with little difference from the timing of the turning point dates established by the NBER. In a pseudo real-time analysis, we also show the good performance of this methodology in terms of accuracy and speed of detection of turning point dates.

Keywords: business cycles; turning points; finite mixture models (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C22 E27 E32 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 36 pages
Date: 2019-05
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ecm, nep-ets and nep-mac
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:bde:wpaper:1914

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