September 23, 2015

Comerica’s Robert A. Dye Wins Prestigious Lawrence R. Klein Award

Most accurate economist to be honored and deliver 2016 forecast

While economic predictions are not hard to come by, the credibility and reputation of the nation’s top economists are built on the accuracy of their commentary and modeling. Robert A. Dye, senior vice president and chief economist at Comerica Bank, has had the most accurate U.S. economic forecasts among the nation’s top economists for the years 2011 to 2014. Accordingly, he will be honored Oct. 14 at a ceremony at the University Club in New York with the prestigious Lawrence R. Klein Award for his achievements.

“I am honored to be the recipient of an award named after Lawrence Klein, one of the most prominent and influential economists of our time,” said Dye. “Providing accurate forecasts over a year is challenging enough. To do so over four years tells me that I have done my job well on behalf of Comerica Bank’s customers and colleagues."

Dye beat out about 50 competitors for this year’s award which is sponsored and judged by the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University.

“To come out on top in this competition, the forecasters had to deal with four years of volatility in GDP data as well as a steady drop in unemployment rates,” said Economics Professor Dennis Hoffman, director of the L. William Seidman Research Institute at the W. P. Carey School of Business. “Robert Dye was on the mark with those two indicators, but what really separated him from the pack were his CPI forecasts. He saw that inflation was going to stay low, when many analysts expected CPI to flare up.”

Dye will deliver his 2016 forecast, “The Transitional Economy: Crosscurrents and Volatility,” at the invitation-only event, which will include the following predictions:

  • The U.S. economy is transitioning through its mid-cycle phase buffeted by global events
  • A moderate GDP expansion continues through 2016, fueled by a strengthening consumer sector and increased government spending
  • The U.S. unemployment rate will fall below five percent by early 2016, averaging 4.6 percent for 2016
  • Housing markets continue to firm up, driven by gains in new and existing home sales and increased residential construction
  • Headwinds for U.S. manufacturing will increase through 2016 because of the strong dollar and decreased demand from the energy sector
  • Oil prices will stay low, helping U.S. consumers, but weighing on the economies of oil producing areas

The Lawrence R. Klein Award is one of the longest-standing and well-known awards in the economics profession. The annual award is named for the late Nobel Prize winner Dr. Lawrence Klein and is presented to the individual or team with the most accurate economic forecast among the Blue Chip Economic Indicators survey participants for a four-year period.

Top industry professionals and others will attend the invitation-only award ceremony October 14 at the University Club in New York, starting at 6 p.m. VIPs expected to be in attendance include Randell E. Moore, executive editor of the Blue Chip Economic Indicators; Amy Hillman, dean of the W. P. Carey School of Business; Hannah Klein, daughter of the award namesake; and Trevor Bond, president and chief executive officer of W. P. Carey Inc. (NYSE: WPC). Maurine Haver, president and founder of Haver Analytics, will present the award to Dye.

Dye provides commentary and research on the U.S. economy and the economies of California, Texas, Arizona, Florida and Michigan – Comerica’s primary markets. He also publishes a monthly U.S. economic update and quarterly regional economic updates targeting 12 key metropolitan statistical areas within Comerica’s footprint. His other regular publications include state-level economic indexes, daily economic alerts and the Comerica Economic Weekly. He is a former director of the National Association of Business Economics and is a member of the Economic Advisory Committee of the American Bankers Association.