Previous research comparing the Fed's Greenbook forecasts with a median forecast from a private-sector panel has found that the Fed's forecasts are superior. These comparisons potentially miss information from other parts of the distribution of forecast errors. We compare the Fed's forecast errors to the upper and lower quartiles from the Survey of Professional Forecasters' forecast errors and find that errors in the lower quartile are significantly smaller. We further investigate whether the forecasters who produced those forecast errors can be identified ex-ante and find that while possible the practicality of this finding is limited due to forecaster turnover. (C) 2014 Society for Policy Modeling.
Where is the Fed in the distribution of forecasters?