The predictions of GROWTH, INFLATION, and
GOODNEWS for the
previous forecast from the US model (October 31, 2003) were
2.4 percent, 1.9 percent, and 3, respectively.
The current predictions from the US model (February 5, 2004) are
3.0 percent, 1.9 percent, and 3, respectively.
In the previous forecast 2003:4 was predicted to be a GOODNEWS
quarter, but it turned out not to be. For the current forecast
2004:1 is predicted to be a GOODNEWS quarter, so the total
number of GOODNEWS quarters is the same at 3. The prediction
of GROWTH, the per capita growth rate in the first three quarters of
2004 at an annual rate, has increased to 3.0 from 2.4 for the previous
forecast. Given that the coefficient on GROWTH in the vote
equation is 0.691, an increase in GROWTH of 0.6 adds 0.4 to the
vote prediction. The new economic values thus
give a prediction of 58.7 percent of the two-party vote for
President Bush rather than 58.3 percent before.
This does not, of course, change the main story that the equation has
been making from the beginning, namely that President Bush is predicted
to win by a sizable margin.