Finance and Financial Management


This paper compares the true, ex-ante forecasting performance of a micro-based model against both a standard macro model and a random walk. In contrast to existing literature, which is focused on longer horizon forecasting, we examine forecasting over horizons from one day to one month (the one-month horizon being where micro and macro analysis begin to overlap). Over our 3-year forecasting sample, we find that the micro-based model consistently out-performs both the random walk and the macro model. Micro-based forecasts account for almost 16 per cent of the sample variance in monthly spot rate changes. These results provide a level of empirical validation as yet unattained by other models. Though our micro-based model out-performs the macro model, this does not imply that past macro analysis has overlooked key fundamentals: our structural interpretation using a fundamentals-based model shows that our findings are consistent with exchange rates being driven by standard fundamentals.