M4 competition


prize money

The fourth competition, M4, started on 1 January 2018 and ended in 31 May 2018.

The M4 extended and replicated the results of the previous three competitions, using an extended and diverse set of time series to identify the most accurate forecasting method(s) for different types of predictions. It aimed to provide answers on how to improve forecasting accuracy and identify the most appropriate methods for each case. To get precise and compelling answers, the M4 Competition utilized 100,000 real-life series, and incorporated all major forecasting methods, including those based on Artificial Intelligence (Machine Learning, ML), as well as traditional statistical ones.

Its results/findings and all related information was published in the winter 2020 issue of the International Journal of Forecasting – Vol. 36, Issue. 1, January–March 2020. In addition, a copy of the M4 Competition can be obtained free here.

A complete list of papers included in the special issue of the International Journal of Forecasting, exclusively devoted to the M4 Competition can be found here .

Initial Results

The initial results of the M4 Competition were announced at the 38th International Symposium on Forecasting (ISF) in Boulder, Colorado, USA.

A paper, discussing the results, the findings and the conclusion of the M4, as well as the way forward, has been published in the International Journal of Forecasting (IJF) and can be found on here.

The paper includes the complete ranks of the participating methods, both for the point forecasts and the prediction intervals. The results are provided per frequency, per domain, as well as for the complete dataset. According to the rules, the point forecasts are evaluated using the OWA, but the sMAPE and MASE values are also displayed. The prediction intervals are evaluated using the MSIS, but the ACD (absolute difference between the coverage of the method and the target 0.95) is also provided.

The test dataset was released on Wednesday, 4th July 2018. For more information on the M4 Competition, can be found on GitHub.

M4 competition sponsors

Platinum Sponsor

Platinum Sponsor

Silver Sponsor

The M4 Forecasting Competition ended on the 31 of June 2018. Following the M4 Competition, the M4 Conference presented and discussed the findings of the most accurate winning forecasting methods as well as suggested how what has been learned from the competition can be implemented into future forecasting methods.