Forecasting Gross Regional Product for Southern California

by Harold Moody, Robert Williams



In November 1952, when the faculty of University of California at Los Angeles, California Graduate School of Business Administration made its first annual forecast of national business conditions in the following year, it was almost alone in the economic prediction business. In recent years, however, a few other universities and a number of financial services, organizations, and journals publish national business forecasts in the fall of each year, as of September 1965. In view of the growing abundance of national forecasts, the University of California business forecasting project now provides both a national and a regional forecast for Southern California. The first regional forecast was made in December 1963 for 1964 and the second in December 1964 for 1965. This article will describe the nature of the regional forecast and will attempt to evaluate some of the techniques used in its preparation. The main reason for the rarity of regional business forecasts is the absence of a measure of total business activity such as gross national product for the whole country. The nearest approach to such a measure is personal income by state, which is computed by the National Income Division of the U.S. Department of Commerce.

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