Forecast or cherry pick?

When it comes to extreme events, public discussion of forecasts often focuses on predictive performance. After the international financial crisis of 2007, for example, the public paid a great deal of attention to economists who had correctly predicted the crisis, attributing it to their superior predictive ability. However, restricting forecast evaluation to subsets of extreme observations has unexpected and undesired effects, and is bound to discredit even the most expert forecasts. In a recent article, statisticians Dr. Sebastian Lerch and Prof. Tilmann Gneiting (both affiliated with HITS and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology), together with their coauthors from Norway and Italy, analyzed and explained this phenomenon and suggested potential remedies. The research team used theoretical arguments, simulation experiments and a real data study on economic variables. The article has just been published in the peer-reviewed journal Statistical Science. It is based on research funded by the Volkswagen Foundation. … (Eurekalert)