On August 1, 2012, we prepared a forecast of the 2012 presidential vote for PS. Our model contains two variables: (1) the cumulated weighted growth in leading economic indicators (LEI) through quarter 13 of the current presidential term and (2) the incumbent party candidate's share in the most recent trial-heat polls, which were for the month of July. What mostly distinguishes our model from others is the reliance on leading indicators from the quarter ending in March of the election year. The early reading of LEI works well as a predictor because it summarizes growth in the economy leading up to the election year and also provides advance indication of changes in the economy during the election year. The exact equation and the exact forecast change as the poll readings change during the election year.
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