Skip to main content

Surveys of Professionals


This chapter provides an overview of surveys of professional forecasters, with a focus on the U.S. Survey of Professional Forecasters and the European Central Bank Survey of Professional Forecasters. A distinguishing feature of these surveys is that they collect point and density forecasts and make the data publicly available. We discuss their structure, issues involved in using the data, and the construction of measures such as disagreement and uncertainty at the aggregate and individual levels. Our review also summarizes the findings of studies exploring issues such as the alignment of point forecasts with measures of central tendency from associated density forecasts, the coverage of density forecasts, the rounding of point and density forecasts, comparisons of forecast accuracy across respondents, and heterogeneity in forecast behavior and the persistence of these differential features. We conclude with some observations for future work.

Keywords: economic forecasting, survey expectations, data collection and modeling, quantitative methods
JEL codes: C53; E37; D84.


Suggested citation: Clements, Michael P., Robert W. Rich, and Joseph S. Tracy. 2022. "Surveys of Professionals." Working Paper No. 22-13. Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland. https://doi.org/10.26509/frbc-wp-2022-13.

Upcoming EventsSEE ALL