The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
This paper presents a "bridge model" for short-run (one or two quarters ahead) forecasting of Italian GDP, relying on industrial production and survey indicators as key variables that can help in providing a real-time first GDP estimate. For a one- to two-year horizon, it formulates and estimates a Bayesian VAR (BVAR) model of the Italian economy. Both the "bridge" and the BVAR model can be of great help in supplementing traditional judgmental or structural econometric forecasts. Given their simplicity and their good forecasting power, the framework may be usefully extended to other variables as well as to other countries