|Presidential Vote Equation--April 29, 2004|
The predictions of GROWTH, INFLATION, and
GOODNEWS for the
previous forecast from the US model (February 5, 2004) were
3.0 percent, 1.9 percent, and 3, respectively.
The current predictions from the US model (April 29, 2004) are
3.2 percent, 2.0 percent, and 3, respectively.
In the previous forecast 2004:1 was predicted to be a GOODNEWS
quarter, but it turned out not to be. For the current forecast
2004:2 is predicted to be a GOODNEWS quarter, so the total
number of GOODNEWS quarters is the same at 3.
The economic predictions thus changed very little.
of GROWTH, the per capita growth rate in the first three quarters of
2004 at an annual rate, has increased to 3.2 from 3.0 for the previous
forecast, and the prediction of INFLATION has increased from
1.9 to 2.0. These new economic values
give a prediction of 58.74 percent of the two-party vote for
President Bush rather than 58.68 percent before.
The main message that the equation has
been making from the beginning is thus not changed,
namely that President Bush is predicted
to win by a sizable margin.
Note that both quarters 2003:4 and 2004:1 are close to being good news quarters. The non per capita growth rates are 4.1 and 4.2 percent respectively, and with population growing at about 1 percent, these are per capita growth rates of 3.1 and 3.2 percent respectively. The trigger for a good news quarter is 3.2 percent per capita growth. In the above discussion I have not counted 2004:1 as a good news quarter because the growth rate to two decimal places is slightly less than 4.2 percent, but this is a very close call. If both of these quarters are counted as good news quarters, the vote prediction rises from 58.74 percent to 60.42 percent, since each good news quarter contributes 0.837 percentage points to the vote prediction.