The Bank of Canada uses core CPI inflation, the year-over-year rate of change of the consumer price index excluding food, energy, and the effects of changes in indirect taxes, as the operational guide for monetary policy.
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.
In this paper, we use firm-level wage and employment data to address whether there is evidence of downward nominal-wage rigidity, and whether that rigidity is associated with a reduction in employment. We describe an estimation bias that can result when estimating reduced-form wage and employment equations and suggest a way of controlling for that bias. […]
There has recently been considerable discussion about the ability of inflation to facilitate the adjustment of prices and wages and thus enhance economic performance. The discussion centres on whether wages are downwardly rigid. Wages are said to be downwardly rigid if it is difficult for the wages of some workers to fall despite underlying supply and demand pressures for decreases. Some authors have suggested that if downward nominal wage rigidity is prevalent it would be desirable to select a positive rate of inflation as the target for monetary policy.
In this article, the authors evaluate the wage-rigidity hypothesis. They first examine the empirical evidence to assess whether the degree of downward rigidity is significant in Canada. They then analyze some key assumptions of the wage-rigidity hypothesis and its implications for employment. They also look at the empirical evidence on whether the combination of downward wage rigidity and low inflation has reduced employment.