Seminar: Economic Expectations and Forecasting Methods
Expectations and forecasts are very important for decision making in economic policy, at firms, and in our private lives. Therefore, it is no surprise that numerous methods have been developed to compute economic forecasts based on different type of data. Especially the availability of big datasets in recent years has led to an adoption of forecasting methods from the machine learning are in business and economics.
At the same time, researchers, central banks, and other institutions have collected more and more survey data on economic expectations of firms, private households, and professional forecasters that allow analyzing the nature of those expectations and answering questions such as: How large is the observed heterogeneity? Which factors can explain differences in, for instance, inflation or growth forecasts? Do agents with different expectations behave differently?
In this seminar, students will discuss different empirical topics that either deal with specific forecasting methods (ranging from classical time-series models to machine learning approaches) or with a certain feature of observed (survey-based) economic expectations. Students will gain experience in writing academic texts, conducting a literature research and in presenting and discussing empirical economic research. They will be able to explain the basics of advanced forecasting methods, to analyze advantages and disadvantages of forecasting methods, and to interpret survey data about forecasts/expectations.
The course is taught in the summer term. The course language is English.
There will be a kick-off meeting at the beginning of the semester (via Zoom). On 7/8 June 2022, there will be a seminar workshop with presentations by students.
You earn 5 ECTS by passing the seminar for which you have to hand in a seminar paper (50% of the grade), present your work in the seminar (30%), and participate in the discussions during the seminar workshop (20%).
More information about how to register for the seminar, grading, available topics, and the seminar in general can be found in the syllabus.