Research and Macroeconomic Management Programme

RMMP 01-R: Regional Course on Advanced Modelling and Forecasting for Policy Analysis for Senior Economists and Directors of Research

Date: March 7 - 25, 2022
Duration: 15 Days
Venue: Online

Introduction

Modeling and forecasting have for a long time served in structuring policy and providing the framework for assessing alternative courses of action. Economic models support the judgement capability of policy makers in several ways including easing the understanding of the workings of an economy and enhancing forecasting. Moreover they constitute frameworks for empirical quantification.

Objectives of the Course

The course is designed to upgrade the analytical skills of economists with operational responsibility for preparing policy papers, statistical data, forecasts and other inputs into the policy making process through intensive training in techniques for developing macroeconomic and demand for money models. In particular, the course will be beneficial for staff with operational responsibility for preparing policy papers, compiling analytical data, generating forecasts and providing other analytical inputs into the policy making process. The main objective of the course is to upgrade participants’ skills in the following:

  • • Techniques of developing macroeconomic models
  • • Data manipulation
  • • Techniques and procedures for monitoring periodically, the movement of key economic variables and methods for tracking their effects on macroeconomic aggregates
  • • Simulating the effects of external and internal shocks and policy changes and
  • • Forecasting models for macroeconomic policy formulation for monetary management.
Main Themes

The main themes to be covered are as follows:

  • i) Basic Econometrics; General-to-specific modeling, applications and examples, generalized methods of moments, case study of model building with the classical linear regression model etc.
  • ii) Univariate Time Series Modeling and Forecasting; Standard models of stochastic processes, ARMA processes and building ARMA models, case studies in estimation of ARMA models for forecasting inflation etc.
  • iii) Multivariate Models – Simultaneous equation models, vector autoregressive (VAR) models, Structural VAR models, and Bayesian VAR models.
  • iv) Unit Root and co-integration in Modeling Long-Run Relationships, equilibrium correction, seasonality tests, structural breaks and tests; case study estimation of money demand functions, currency forecasting, exchange rate forecasting, etc.
  • v) Modelling and Forecasting Volatility I; Non-linearity in financial time series; ARCH models, GARCH models, GARCH-M, E-GARCH and T-GARCH formulations; volatility forecasting using GARCH-type models
  • vi) Modelling and Forecasting Volatility II, Approaches to forecasting, simple and naïve methods, model-based forecasting, macroeconomic model building, numerical analysis and forecasting, numerical simulations, Fan Chart projections, case study in modeling and forecasting volatility etc.
  • vii) Cross-Section and Survey Methodology; How to conduct surveys, analysis of survey data; binary choice models, multinomial choice models, sample selection and truncated models
  • viii) Panel Data Econometrics; basic panel data analysis, one-way error components models, two-way error components models, Dynamic panel models etc.
  • ix) Other forecasting models for macroeconomic policy formulation, State-Space models and the Kalman Filter; Fan Charts for Forecasting Inflation and GDP, etc.
  • x) General Equilibrium Models for Monetary Policy Analysis, methodology and evaluation of DSGE models, etc.
Who May Attend

The course is intended for middle/senior/executive level officials of central banks, ministries of finance and economic planning, and other relevant agencies whose responsibilities include policy analysis and advise on economic management. Candidates should have at least some experience in econometrics with a minimum background in economics. Participants would be required to bring along with them, their country macroeconomic data as well as laptops for the course.

RMMP 02 – R: IMF / WAIFEM / MEFMI Regional Course on Price Statistics (PRS)

Date: April 4 - 8, 2022
Duration: 5 Days
Venue: Online

Introduction

The value aggregates for goods and services are determined by the price indices. This value aggregate for a domain of goods and services is determined as the sum of the products of the prices and quantities of those goods and services. The four major price indices in the system of economic statistics are the consumer price index (CPI), the producer price index (PPI), and the export and import price indices (XPI and MPI). They constitute the major indicators of macroeconomic performance. They indicate the purchasing power of money in various types of transactions and other flows involving goods and services. They are also used as deflators to provide summary measures of the volume of goods and services produced and consumed in an economy. Consequently, these indices are important tools in the design and conduct of the monetary and fiscal policy of the government and are as well used to inform economic decisions in the private sector. It is, therefore, imperative for compilers of consumer price indexes (CPIs), producer price indexes (PPIs), or export-import price indexes (XMPIs) to be well informed on the theory and practice of the compilation of these and other price statistics.

Objectives of the Course

This course, presented by the IMF Statistics Department, is intended to broaden participants’ understanding of the theory and practice of compiling CPIs, PPIs, and XMPIs. On completion of the course, participants should be able to apply the principles of price index theory, assess how well a price index meets international guidelines for best practice and apply methods for dealing with such index compilation challenges as unavailable items, quality change, and keeping an index up to date.

Main Themes

The main topics to be covered in the course include:

- Index number theory and its practical implications in terms of the choice of the index number formula at lower and higher levels of aggregation.
- Methods for sampling and collecting data from retail outlets and enterprises.
- The role of price indexes as deflators in the 2008 SNA in relation to principles of scope, coverage, and valuation.
- Methods for handling temporarily and permanently unavailable items
- Adjusting prices for quality changes, including new products, establishments, and outlets and
- Chaining and linking indexes with updated weighting structures.

Who may attend

The course is targeted at experienced compilers of consumer price indexes (CPIs), producer price indexes (PPIs), or export-import price indexes (XMPIs). Participants should have a degree in economics or statistics or equivalent experience.

RMMP 03-R: Regional Course on Exchange Rate Regimes and Policies

Date: June 27 - July 1, 2022
Duration: 5 Days
Venue: Abuja, Nigeria

Introduction

Exchange rate is one of the important determinants of a country’s relative level of economic health. Therefore, the choice of an appropriate exchange rate regime by small open economies is an important policy issue. Of equal importance is the issue of the appropriate exchange rate regime within the context of regional monetary integration. To this end, WAIFEM will organize a regional course on Exchange Rate Regimes and Policies.

Objectives of the course

The course introduces participants to the different regimes and exchange rate arrangements that countries and regional bodies may choose. It addresses the factors relevant for the choices and the consequences of these choices.

Main Themes

Topics to be covered include: the debate on optimal choice of exchange rate regimes, the choice and design of appropriate exchange rate regimes, exchange rate dynamics and monetary integration in the ECOWAS countries, Economic integration and exchange rate regimes: Lessons from other regions, monetary policy in managed exchange rate regimes, financial globalization and capital flows, assessment of the equilibrium real exchange rates, and the pros and cons of capital controls.

Who May Attend

The Workshop is targeted at senior economists, including middle/executive level officials of Ministries of Finance and Economic Planning, Central Banks, and relevant public sector agencies involved in the formulation, implementation and analysis of exchange rate policy for effective macroeconomic management.

RMMP 04-R: Regional Course on Econometric Methods for Policy Analysis

Date: July 18 - 29, 2022
Duration: 10 days
Venue: Lagos, Nigeria

Introduction

Economic policy analysis requires considerable knowledge of basic econometric methods. This is in view of the fact that some of the time, economic variables must be measured in order to know their time paths and behaviour along trend. Empirical analysis of economic variables therefore enables the policy analysts to forecast or predict how such variables are likely to behave in the future lending themselves for control of economic models and policy purposes. To this end, West African Institute for Financial and Economic Management (WAIFEM) will organize a Regional Course on Econometric Methods for policy Analysis.

Objectives of the course

The course is structured at the basic level, and hence no prior knowledge of econometrics is required, even though this might be helpful. At the end of the course, participants should be able to conduct basic statistical and econometric analyses and forecasting to be able to inform policy. They should be able to among others: derive multiple regression parameter estimates, and perform statistical inference on regression parameters. Participants would also understand basic research methods and use econometric software (Eviews, RATS, Stata, SPSS) for basic data analysis and forecasting.

Main Themes

The course utilizes a combination of lectures, computer-based syndicate exercises, case studies as well as group presentations. The main themes include: Economic Questions and Data Collection; Basic Computing and Econometric Software for Modelling Economic and Fianncial Data (EXCEL, SPSS, EVIEWS, RATS, STATA), Review of Statistics, Review of Probability; Fundamentals of Regression Analysis, Simultaneous Equations, Introduction to Time Series Regression and Forecasting, Economic Forecasting, Research Methods: Conducting a Regression Study using Economic data.

Who May Attend

The Workshop is targeted at senior economists, including middle/executive level officials of Ministries of Finance and Economic Planning, Central Banks, and relevant public sector agencies involved in the formulation, implementation and analysis of monetary policy for effective macroeconomic management.

RMMP 05-R: IMF / WAIFEM / MEFMI Regional Course on International Transactions in Remittances Statistics(ITRS)

Date: September 19 - 23, 2022
Duration: 5 days
Venue: Blended

Introduction

Remittances constitute a major as well as an important source of external funding for developing countries. Data has shown that in the past couple of years remittances have exceeded official development assistance received by most of these developing countries. These developing countries also face methodological challenges associated with the collection and compilation of remittances data and the evaluation of their impact on development. In this regard, WAIFEM in collaboration with IMF and MEFMI is offering a course on International Transaction in Remittances Statistics with aim of improving the collection and compilation and ultimately the quality of data in the region.

Objective of the course

The objective of the course is to familiarize participants with concepts and practical compilation practices relating to the data on international transactions in remittances in line with the IMF’s Balance of Payments and International Investment Position Manual 6th Edition (BPM6).

Main Themes

The course will cover the following topics, among others:

  • • Recent developments in concepts and definitions of international transactions in remittances and existing frameworks for compiling remittances data
  • • Concepts and definitions of components of remittances including personal transfers, compensation of employees, transfers to non-profit institutions serving households (NPISHs)
  • • Remittance channels and
  • • Possible data sources and methodologies for compilation of these statistics

Who May Attend

The primary target group for this course is junior to middle level staff from Central Banks and National Statistics Offices responsible for the compilation and reporting of Remittances statistics. The secondary target group includes data users from Ministries of Finance and Planning.

RMMP 06-R: IMF / WAIFEM / WAMA Regional Course on Balance of Payments Statistics

Date: September 26 - 30, 2022
Duration: 5 days
Venue: Blended

Introduction

The balance of payments is a statistical statement that summarizes, for a specific period of time, the economic transactions of an economy with the rest of the world. It is imperative that the compilers of national accounts and balance of payments and external statistics constantly upscale their knowledge on the methodology for collecting and compiling balance of payments and other statistics. Such knowledge and skills are important in the analysis, formulation and implementation of macroeconomic policies.

Objectives of the course

The course, presented by the IMF Statistics Department, provides practical advice on compiling and disseminating the international accounts (balance of payments and IIP) statistics based on the BPM6 Compilation Guide. The purpose of the course is to demonstrate how the conceptual framework described in the BPM6 may be translated into practice.

The course will, therefore, focus on compilation practices, including data sources that international accounts can draw on, as well as complex methodological and compilation issues related to specific balance of payments and IIP components and other issues that cut across accounts. Participants will have the opportunity to discuss compilation challenges they have encountered and gain insights into the analytical uses of the international accounts.

Upon completion of the course, participants will be able to:

  • • Compile and disseminate balance of payments and IIP statistics using the techniques provided in the BMP6 Compilation Guide.
  • • Identify new data sources to be used to improve the compilation of balance of payments and IIP statistics.
  • • Apply statistical techniques for dealing with complex methodological and compilation issues.
  • • Deepen their knowledge of the analytical use of balance of payments and IIP statistics.
Main Themes

The following broad themes will be treated:

  •  input-output matrix
  •  social accounting matrix
  •  conceptual framework of the balance of payments
  •  survey techniques and methodology for compiling balance of payments
  •  inter-linkages between the balance of payments and other sectoral accounts
  •  flow of funds matrix
  •  balance of payments analysis and forecasting and
  •  balance of payments entries under the 6th edition of the IMF Balance of Payments Manual.

Who May Attend

The course is targeted at middle/executive level officials of central banks, ministries of finance, economic planning and trade, government statistics bureau/offices, and other public sector agencies involved in the compilation of national accounts and balance of payments as well as the analysis, formulation and implementation of macroeconomic policies.

RMMP 07-R: IMF / WAIFEM / MEFMI Regional Course on Government Finance Statistics / Public Debt Statistics

Date: October 24 - 28, 2022
Duration: 5 days
Venue: Online

Introduction

It is imperative that national authorities not only possess but also strengthen their capacity to formulate fiscal policy and monitor fiscal developments. In this regard there are internationally recognized statistical reporting framework formulated by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The Government Finance Statistics Manual (GFSM) supports the balance sheet approach to analyzing economic policy by bringing together stocks and flows in a transparent and consistent framework. The GFS framework provides a basis for analyzing public investment while providing a "common language" that fiscal analysts can use to develop a consistent approach to handling new, and often complex, government operations that create challenges in fiscal reporting and analysis.

Also, the GFSM is useful as a guide in designing quantitative macroeconomic frame work because it yields source data for the measures of government saving, investment, and consumption. These measures have been harmonized with the national accounts framework. Equally important is the fact that the framework forms an integral part of the IMF's effort to promote international standards for transparency in fiscal reporting.

The integrated government finance statistics (GFS) template can be used to determine government accounts that shows the economic activities of government in a manner suitable for fiscal analysis. Its presentation assures a focus on economic substance over legal form, improves data harmonization and comparability across countries, and ensures full transparency in respect of the different statistical concepts and practices.

Objectives of the course

This two-week course, to be organized by the IMF Statistics Department in collaboration with WAIFEM focuses on various aspects of preparing and disseminating government finance statistics (GFS). The course is, therefore, aimed at exposing participants to understanding how existing fiscal source data can be utilized effectively, how to improvesource data so as to optimize the use of these data in fiscal analysis, the linkages of the GFS with the budget process, chart of accounts, financial statements, and various other data sets, such as the monetary and financial statistics, national accounts, and the balance of payments statistics. It will also explore issues related to data reporting to the IMF as well as good practices with regards to GFS dissemination, including the IMFs special data dissemination standard.

Main Themes

The main themes to be covered include: preparation and dissemination of government finance statistics; effective utilization of existing fiscal data; improving source data so as to optimize the use of these data in fiscal analysis; the linkages of the GFS with the budget process; chart of accounts; and financial statements. Others are the various other data sets, such as the monetary and financial statistics, national accounts, and the balance of payments statistics. Issues related to data reporting to the IMF; the collaboration among national data compilers, and best practices with regard to GFS dissemination, including the IMFs special data dissemination standard.

Who May Attend

The course is designed for senior officials from the Central Banks, Ministries of Finance, Public Account Offices, Statistics Offices as well as other central government agencies involved with government finance statistics.

RMMP 08-R: Regional Workshop on Currency Management and Forecasting

Date: December 5 - 9, 2022
Duration: 5 Days
Venue: Abuja, Nigeria

Introduction

There are new and emerging challenges facing currency managers in central banks. These include, risk management, forecasting demand for currency, and other developments across the entire range of activities within the currency management function. For example, there is the need for an efficient public education strategy and communication, to ensure the integrity of banknotes and currency. Also, with the emphasis on cost savings, central banks need to look carefully at where maximum efficiencies can be made, and to be aware of the risks.

Long lead times in banknote production also make it imperative for central banks to be able to model banknote demand accurately (at least five years into the future). Clearly, strategic management of currency is impossible without accurate forecasts. Currency demand models must therefore draw on macroeconomic variables such as interest rates, inflation and growth forecasts, and also incorporate historical data on currency deposits/withdrawals and replacement rates etc.

Objectives of the workshop

This workshop is aimed at exploring the key challenges central banks face in currency management and how they are tackling them. Specifically, the course is designed to deepen the knowledge and upgrade the analytical skills of staff in performing the currency management function. It is also designed to enhance participants’ forecasting techniques and expose them to contemporary issues in banknote and currency management.

Broad Themes

The workshop content includes:

  • • The Banknote Life-Cycle and Risk Management
  • • Demand Forecasting, Fitness Standards, Sorting and Processing
  • • New Directions and New Demands in Banknote Design
  • • New challenges and Threats
  • • Movements in currency in circulation and monetary policy formulation
  • • Denominational impact analysis of currency structure and computation
  • • Banknote Issue policy and practice
  • • Forecasting currency in circulation, etc.

Who May Attend:

The Workshop is targeted at senior/executive level officials of Central Banks and other monetary authorities that are involved in currency management issues. The programme will also be beneficial for financial journalists to scale-up their knowledge about currency management issues, and thereby enhance their advocacy roles.

RMMP 09-R: IMF / WAIFEM Regional Course on Macroeconomic Diagnostics

Date: November 7 - 18, 2022
Duration: 10 Days
Venue: Accra, Ghana

Introduction

Effective macroeconomic management requires ability to properly assess the economic health of a country. Such assessment, in turn, requires the use of some applied tools to aid the policy making process. This course, organized by WAIFEM in collaboration with the IMF Institute for Capacity Development, is designed to strengthen participants’ ability to comprehensively assess a country’s macroeconomic situation, including the current state of the economy; the stance of fiscal and monetary policy; financial stability; exchange rate misalignments; vulnerabilities in the different sectors; and the medium-term outlook, especially the sustainability of public and external debt. The course emphasizes practical tools for use in day-to-day macroeconomic analysis and relies on customized case studies to illustrate how these tools are applied and how they can contribute to the policymaking process.

Objectives of the course

Upon completion of this course, participants should be able to:

  • • Analyze potential output and calculate output gaps, identify expenditure composition of growth, measure inflation, assess sources of inflation, calculate Taylor rules, measure cyclically-adjusted and structural fiscal balances, analyze public debt sustainability, calculate and interpret financial sector soundness and risk indicators, analyze the external position, examine external debt sustainability, and evaluate the exchange rate misalignment.
  • • Use different information, which may give conflicting signals, to assess the stance of current fiscal, monetary, and financial policies, and to diagnose the outlook for the economy.
  • • Assess the medium-term prospects of the economy, including the sustainability of public and external debt, and identify impediments to long-term growth.
  • • Discuss the potential external and internal risks and vulnerabilities to the economy, and interpret the implications these risks may have on the economy and on the policies to deal with those risks.
Broad Themes

The course covers assessments of:

  • • The current state of the macro-economy
  • • The stance of fiscal and monetary policy
  • • Financial stability and
  • • The medium-term prospects of the economy, including the sustainability of public and external debt, the possible misalignment of the exchange rate, and vulnerabilities from the different sectors. The course will rely on case studies relevant for the region to illustrate the application of these tools and to show how they can be used as input in the policymaking process.

Who May Attend

Mid-to-senior level officials in Central Banks and Ministries of Finance and Economic Planning who are directly involved in diagnosing the state of the macroeconomy and making projections. Participants should have an advanced degree in economics or equivalent experience, good quantitative skills, and proficiency in the use of Excel. However participants are strongly recommended to complete the online FPP.1x and FFP.2x courses (or the face-to-face FPP) prior to enrolling in this course.