Inside the Crystal Ball: How to Make and Use Forecasts

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9781118865071: Inside the Crystal Ball: How to Make and Use Forecasts

A practical guide to understanding economic forecasts

In Inside the Crystal Ball: How to Make and Use Forecasts, UBS Chief U.S. Economist Maury Harris helps readers improve their own forecasting abilities by examining the elements and processes that characterize successful and failed forecasts. The book:

  • Provides insights from Maury Harris, named among Bloomberg's 50 Most Influential People in Global Finance.
  • Demonstrates "best practices" in the assembly and evaluation of forecasts. Harris walks readers through the real-life steps he and other successful forecasters take in preparing their projections. These valuable procedures can help forecast users evaluate forecasts and forecasters as inputs for making their own specific business and investment decisions.
  • Emphasizes the critical role of judgment in improving projections derived from purely statistical methodologies. Harris explores the prerequisites for sound forecasting judgment—a good sense of history and an understanding of contemporary theoretical frameworks—in readable and illuminating detail.
  • Addresses everyday forecasting issues, including the credibility of government statistics and analyses, fickle consumers, and volatile business spirits. Harris also offers procedural guidelines for special circumstances, such as natural disasters, terrorist threats, gyrating oil and stock prices, and international economic crises.
  • Evaluates major contemporary forecasting issues—including the now commonplace hypothesis of sustained economic sluggishness, possible inflation outcomes in an environment of falling unemployment, and projecting interest rates when central banks implement unprecedented low interest rate and quantitative easing (QE) policies.
  • Brings to life Harris's own experiences and those of other leading economists in his almost four-decade career as a professional economist and forecaster. Dr. Harris presents his personal recipes for long-term credibility and commercial success to anyone offering advice about the future.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

From the Inside Flap:

Drawing on author Maury Harris' long and successful career in the field of economic forecasting, Inside the Crystal Ball offers an insider's hands-on guide that can improve almost anyone's ability to make long-range business and investment decisions. Filled with illustrative examples and real-world situations, the book explains how and why forecasting practitioners succeed, and sometimes fail, to correctly predict the future. Using the information and strategies outlined in this vital resource can bolster your ability to effectively communicate advice about the economic future to clients, bosses, colleagues, and anyone else.

For the investor, Inside the Crystal Ball is an insider's guide to demystifying the sometimes confusing and contradictory analysis of the future presented by pundits and professionals as support for investment decisions. Harris clearly illustrates how accurate forecasting is more about honing judgment of the underlying drivers than about proficiency in pure quantitative analysis—mathematics and statistics. In other words, a successful forecasting career is for all of us, not just the geeks.

The author reveals why some forecasters are more reliable than others and presents his successful approach to both the statistical and judgmental aspects of forecasting. Harris assesses the four competing schools of economic thought and sheds light on their strengths and weaknesses. The book also addresses long-standing forecasting challenges such as reliance on government information, shifting business sentiment and fickle consumers, as well as the newer challenges such as the New "Normal" and terrorism. In addition, Harris examines in detail the toughest challenge of all—the Federal Reserve's influence on interest rates.

Everybody forecasts and listens to forecasters. Forecasting is an essential and unavoidable part of our lives. Let Maury Harris's Inside the Crystal Ball give you the confidence to originate, communicate, and evaluate advice about the future more effectively.

From the Back Cover:

Praise for INSIDE THE CRYSTAL BALL

"An exceptionally clear and comprehensive guide to forecasting. Maury Harris conveys his wealth of experience, knowledge, and judgment in a practical and usable manner for the forecasting practitioner. The book describes the tools, the pitfalls, what to believe, and what to discount. It is an essential read for anyone looking into the future."
—David Crowe, Chief Economist, Economics and Housing Policy, National Association of Home Builders

"Consensus forecasts are often wrong, a point well known to most pundits. Maury Harris' thoughtful analysis often has shown what the majority is missing. This rare and valuable skill stems from a deep understanding of the pitfalls associated with making forecasts. He explains why accuracy is an art, not a science. A wonderful read."
—Henry J. Herrmann, CEO and COB, Waddell & Reed Financial, Inc.

"Maury provides two sides to a very important coin. First, forecasters benefit from a simple, user-friendly read on developing forecasts but also being realistic about the pitfalls and degree of accuracy on the forecast. Second, Maury's work also provides the user of forecasts an interesting and much-needed perspective on the value of forecasts and what forecasts can and cannot deliver. I would recommend Maury's book."
—John E. Silvia, Chief Economist, Wells Fargo; incoming President, the National Association of Business Economists

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Book Description John Wiley Sons Inc, United States, 2014. Hardback. Book Condition: New. 1. Auflage. Language: English . Brand New Book. A practical guide to understanding economic forecasts In Inside the Crystal Ball: How to Make and Use Forecasts, UBS Chief U.S. Economist Maury Harris helps readers improve their own forecasting abilities by examining the elements and processes that characterize successful and failed forecasts. The book: *Provides insights from Maury Harris, named among Bloomberg s 50 Most Influential People in Global Finance. *Demonstrates best practices in the assembly and evaluation of forecasts. Harris walks readers through the real-life steps he and other successful forecasters take in preparing their projections. These valuable procedures can help forecast users evaluate forecasts and forecasters as inputs for making their own specific business and investment decisions. *Emphasizes the critical role of judgment in improving projections derived from purely statistical methodologies. Harris explores the prerequisites for sound forecasting judgment a good sense of history and an understanding of contemporary theoretical frameworks in readable and illuminating detail. *Addresses everyday forecasting issues, including the credibility of government statistics and analyses, fickle consumers, and volatile business spirits. Harris also offers procedural guidelines for special circumstances, such as natural disasters, terrorist threats, gyrating oil and stock prices, and international economic crises. *Evaluates major contemporary forecasting issues including the now commonplace hypothesis of sustained economic sluggishness, possible inflation outcomes in an environment of falling unemployment, and projecting interest rates when central banks implement unprecedented low interest rate and quantitative easing (QE) policies. *Brings to life Harris s own experiences and those of other leading economists in his almost four-decade career as a professional economist and forecaster. Dr. Harris presents his personal recipes for long-term credibility and commercial success to anyone offering advice about the future. Bookseller Inventory # AAH9781118865071

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Book Description John Wiley Sons Inc, United States, 2014. Hardback. Book Condition: New. 1. Auflage. Language: English . Brand New Book. A practical guide to understanding economic forecasts In Inside the Crystal Ball: How to Make and Use Forecasts, UBS Chief U.S. Economist Maury Harris helps readers improve their own forecasting abilities by examining the elements and processes that characterize successful and failed forecasts. The book: *Provides insights from Maury Harris, named among Bloomberg s 50 Most Influential People in Global Finance. *Demonstrates best practices in the assembly and evaluation of forecasts. Harris walks readers through the real-life steps he and other successful forecasters take in preparing their projections. These valuable procedures can help forecast users evaluate forecasts and forecasters as inputs for making their own specific business and investment decisions. *Emphasizes the critical role of judgment in improving projections derived from purely statistical methodologies. Harris explores the prerequisites for sound forecasting judgment a good sense of history and an understanding of contemporary theoretical frameworks in readable and illuminating detail. *Addresses everyday forecasting issues, including the credibility of government statistics and analyses, fickle consumers, and volatile business spirits. Harris also offers procedural guidelines for special circumstances, such as natural disasters, terrorist threats, gyrating oil and stock prices, and international economic crises. *Evaluates major contemporary forecasting issues including the now commonplace hypothesis of sustained economic sluggishness, possible inflation outcomes in an environment of falling unemployment, and projecting interest rates when central banks implement unprecedented low interest rate and quantitative easing (QE) policies. *Brings to life Harris s own experiences and those of other leading economists in his almost four-decade career as a professional economist and forecaster. Dr. Harris presents his personal recipes for long-term credibility and commercial success to anyone offering advice about the future. Bookseller Inventory # AAH9781118865071

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