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Monday, August 31, 2015

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Real-Time Data Set for Macroeconomists

The real-time data set consists of vintages, or snapshots, of time series of major macroeconomic variables. The data set may be used by macroeconomic researchers to verify empirical results, to analyze policy, or to forecast. New vintages are added shortly after the 15th day of the middle month of each quarter.

Historical Data

Download: Complete vintage history. For each variable, you can download the complete time-series history for each vintage.  Data are for the levels of variables.

Download: Only first-, second-, and third-release values. For selected variables, you can download the first-, second-, and third-release values. Data are for period-over-period growth rates (variables that trend) or levels (variables that do not trend).

Background Reading

To understand the purposes and structure of the data set, please read one of the following documents.

  • Background for researchers: Research economists should read the journal article: "A Real-Time Data Set for Macroeconomists," Dean Croushore and Tom Stark, Journal of Econometrics 105 (November 2001), pp. 111-30. This is the preferred article to cite for technical journal articles. Additional research results not published in the Journal of Econometrics article can be found in "A Real-Time Data Set for Macroeconomists," PDF Dean Croushore and Tom Stark, Working Paper 99-4, June 1999.
  • Nontechnical background reading: Noneconomists will find the following article from the Philadelphia Fed's Business Review more helpful, since it requires less technical knowledge: "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Data Bank: A Real-Time Data Set for Macroeconomists," PDF Dean Croushore and Tom Stark, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia Business Review, September/October 2000.

Resources