ESA National Economic Panel Polls
Australian Federal Budget 2017 - Outsourcing Economic Forecasting - May 2017
Proposition: "Given the Commonwealth Treasury’s ongoing difficulty in making accurate forecasts of some of the key economic variables underpinning the Budget – in particular nominal GDP growth – the Government should ‘outsource’ the economic forecasts used in framing the Budget to an independent agency (such as the Parliamentary Budget Office), as now happens in the United Kingdom."
Collaborator credits: we would like to thank Saul Eslake for his assistance in framing this poll question and for his expert overview of the results.
Overview of poll results by Saul Eslake
Since the early 2000s, Treasury has had difficulty making accurate forecasts of some of the key economic parameters underpinning the annual Federal Budget. In particular, Treasury’s forecasts of growth in nominal GDP – a key driver of revenue projections – have frequently been wide of the mark. That in turn largely reflects the difficulties Treasury has had in forecasting movements in Australia’s terms of trade, and hence in forecasting changes in the GDP deflator (as opposed to errors in forecasts of real GDP growth).