Firms are at the forefront of adopting new technology. Using survey data from a global network of central banks, we assess the effects of digitalization on firms’ pricing and employment decisions.
Staff discussion papers
We investigate whether questions in the Bank of Canada’s Business Outlook Survey can provide useful signals for the output gap.
In this paper, we extend the state-space methodology proposed by Blagrave et al. (2015) and decompose Canadian potential output into trend labour productivity and trend labour input. As in Blagrave et al. (2015), we include output growth and inflation expectations from consensus forecasts to help refine our estimates.
Every quarter, the Bank of Canada conducts quarterly consultations with businesses across Canada, referred to as the Business Outlook Survey (BOS). A principal-component analysis conducted by Pichette and Rennison (2011) led to the development of the BOS indicator, which summarizes survey results and is used by the Bank as a gauge of overall business sentiment.
Measuring Potential Output at the Bank of Canada: The Extended Multivariate Filter and the Integrated FrameworkEstimating potential output and the output gap - the difference between actual output and its potential - is important for the proper conduct of monetary policy. However, the measurement and interpretation of potential output, and hence the output gap, is fraught with uncertainty, since it is unobservable.
Since the autumn of 1997, the regional offices of the Bank of Canada have conducted quarterly consultations with businesses across Canada. These consultations, summarized in the Business Outlook Survey (BOS), are structured around a survey questionnaire that covers topics of importance to the Bank, notably business activity, pressures on production capacity, prices and inflation, and credit conditions.
In recent years, the Canadian economy has been affected by strong movements in relative prices brought about by the surging costs of energy and non-energy commodities, with significant implications for the terms of trade, the exchange rate, and the allocation of resources across Canadian sectors and regions.
Staff working papers
Dismiss the Gap? A Real-Time Assessment of the Usefulness of Canadian Output Gaps in Forecasting InflationWe use a new real-time database for Canada to study various output gap measures. This includes recently developed measures based on models incorporating many variables as inputs (and therefore requiring real-time data for many variables).
The authors examine the link between consumption and disaggregate wealth in Canada. They use a vector-error-correction model in which permanent and transitory shocks are identified using the restrictions implied by cointegration proposed by King, Plosser, Stock, and Watson (1991) and Gonzalo and Granger (1995).
Technological innovations in the financial industry pose major problems for the measurement of monetary aggregates. The authors describe work on a new measure of money that has a more satisfactory means of identifying and removing the effects of financial innovations.
During the nineties, stock prices increased remarkably. The number of households owning stocks also rose considerably. If stock market wealth has an effect on consumers' decisions, then the rise in equity prices could have contributed to the growth in consumption in recent years.
A number of authors have suggested that economies face a long-run inflation-unemployment trade-off due to downward nominal-wage rigidity. This theory has implications for the nature of the short-run Phillips curve when wage inflation is low.
Several economists, including Cover (1992), Ammer and Brunner (1995), Macklem, Paquet, and Phaneuf (1996), have worked over the past few years to determine whether monetary policy shocks have asymmetric effects on output. These authors have generally found that negative monetary shocks tend to reduce output growth significantly, and that positive shocks generally have a weaker […]
Bank of Canada Review articles
November 17, 2011 This article reviews recent work that uses principal-component analysis to extract information common to indicators from the Bank of Canada’s Business Outlook Survey (BOS). The authors use correlation analysis and an out-of-sample forecasting exercise to assess and compare the information content of the principal component with that of responses to key individual survey questions on growth in real gross domestic product and in real business investment. Results suggest that summarizing the common movements among BOS indicators may provide useful information for forecasting near-term growth in business investment. For growth in real gross domestic product, however, the survey’s balance of opinion on future sales growth appears to be more informative.
May 21, 2004 Some analysts believe that a sharp rise in equity values was an important factor in the strong consumer spending between 1995 and 2000. Empirical evidence suggests, however, that consumer spending responds more to changes in housing wealth than it does to equity wealth.