October 14, 2007 The dramatic growth in China's exports of consumer goods such as clothing, toys, and electronics, and imports of primary commodities such as oil and metals is having major effects on global supply and demand. In examining China's role in global relative price changes, Francis finds that downward pressure on the relative prices of consumer goods is likely to persist as China's large labour supply continues its migration into manufacturing. Likewise, China's size and growth will also remain key drivers of global commodities demand for some time. Despite these forces, inflation-targeting central banks have the tools to keep inflation close to target, thus offsetting any persistent upward or downward inflationary pressure.
June 15, 2007 Dion examines the evolution of Canadian productivity since the mid-1990s, using the United States as a benchmark. During this period, trend productivity growth in Canada remained modest, whereas the U.S. witnessed a strong resurgence. Among the factors identified as potential root causes of Canada's lower productivity performance are a lower investment in information and communications technology, reallocation and adjustment costs associated with large relative price movements, and a weak demand for innovation.