Economics 694

ECON 694: Business Forecasting

Prerequisite:  Admission to the MBA program or graduate status, STAT 205 (or equivalent) and MATH 151 (or equivalent).

Credit Hours: (3)

This course covers basic and advanced topics in forecasting business and economic data. Emphasis is placed on practical application using statistical software.

Detailed Description of Course

1) An introduction to forecasting
2) Review of statistics and microsoft excel
3) Visual forecasting (Why it's important to make good graphs.
4) Decomposing data: trends, seasons and cycles
5) Trend forecasting methods
    a. Regression
    b. Smoothing
6) Seasonal Forecasting Methods
7) Cycle Forecasting Methods
8) Multiple regression for time series
9) Ensemble forecasts
10) Classification: regression trees, logit models, neural networks
11) Judgement-based forecasts: experts, surveys, the delphi method, prediction markets
12) Putting forecasting to work
    a. The forecasting process
    b. Making forecasts valuable to the end-user
    c. Forecast evaluation and monitoring

Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

Lectures and class discussion will be the primary teaching methods.  The course will combine the use of lectures, videotapes, guest speakers, reading materials, project reports, and case analysis.  Students will receive hands-on computer experience.  In addition, forecasting techniques based on subjective and judgmental methods and their applications in long-range forecasts will be discussed at length.

Goals and Objectives of the Course

After successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

1) Describe the role of forecasting within organizations;
2) Construct and assess trend and seasonal forecasting models;
3) Construct and assess mixed moving average and auto-regressive (cycle) forecasting models (ARIMA):
4) Justify model selection and compare different models using measures of fit and common sense;
5) Perform predictice classification using regression trees, logistic regerssion and neural networks;
6) Describe judgmental forecasting methods and their applications;
7) Describe the uses and limitations of different forecasting techniques;
8) Demonstrate proficiency using softawre such as SAS/JMP and Excel to create and evalaute forecasts.
9) Analyze how changes in economic variables affect decisions of firms, households and equilibrium in markets (SLO6).
10) Analyze how changes in macroeconomic variable (e.g., consumption, business investment, government spending, or foregin trade) affect the national economy (SLO5).


Assessment Measures

Student progress will be evaluated through assignments, exams, projects and presentations.


Other Course Information

The instructor will be expected to integrate substantial readings from the current and/or original professional literature into the course.


Approval and Revision Dates

May 1, 2018
4/17/00 New course approved