Note: Other posts in this discussion are available under the tag “inflation debate“.
So, after calling on you guys to give me some indication of your views on monetary policy we discussed what inflation is, and then we moved on to discussing the costs that stem from inflation. We are now ready to discuss the big topic – the trade-off between inflation and other things.
I’m glad that we managed to talk about this topic this year, as it is the 50th anniversery of the paper “the Relationship between Unemployment and the Rate of Change of Money Wages in the United Kingdom 1861-1957” written by our own Dr Phillips. In this paper Dr Phillips found that, over this period, there was a negative relationship between money wage changes and unemployment.
This was eventually broadened to a negative relationship between inflation and unemployement, which gave rise to the Phillips curve. Initially this led economists to believe that there is a trade-off between inflation and unemployment. However, the instability of the Phillips curve when policy analysts tried to take advantage of this relationship (when analysts tried to use the relationship it disappeared), and the popularity of the natural rate hypothesis (stating that there is a “natural rate” that unemployment settles at), led to a movement away from this, and the statement that there is no long-run trade-off between inflation and unemployment! (now viewed as the NAIRU)
Taking this as given, what other trade-offs are there? Read more