June 17, 2007
Trend Labour Supply in Canada: Implications of Demographic Shifts and the Increasing Labour Force Attachment of WomenWhile demographic change has been an ongoing process in Canada, labour market implications of an aging population will become more acute in coming years. This article discusses the anticipated slowing in the growth of trend labour input over the coming decades with the aging of the baby boomers, declining fertility rates, and the stabilization of the labour force attachment of women. As the pool of labour shrinks, employers and governments will be looking for ways to address barriers to continued labour force participation and firms will have a greater incentive to find ways of improving labour productivity.
This paper asks: What is the effect of government policy on output and inequality in an environment with education and labor-supply decisions? The answer is given in a general equilibrium model, consistent with the post 1960s facts on male wage inequality and labor supply in the U.S. In the model, education and labor-supply decisions depend on progressive income taxation, the education system, the social security system, and technology-driven wage differentials.