Inflation: a primer
|Inflation: a primer||4.19 MB|
Over the past year, inflation has accelerated both in Australia and in most advanced economies, to rates much faster than have been observed for many years. Not unsurprisingly, this has caused much concern among people whose cost of living has risen abruptly. It has also created great challenges for policy-makers.
This report investigates the history of Australian inflation and policy choices and provides a counter to the view that low inflation and the current inflation target is an unalloyed good. The period of inflation targeting has coincided with a strong shift of national income away from workers to company profits. It has also seen a tendency of the Reserve Bank to act decisively when inflation grows above the target and be much less active when, as we saw in the years prior to the pandemic, inflation slowed below the target range. The report also reveals that workers’ wages did not cause the current level of inflation and yet workers are being urged to accept historic falls in real wages in order bring inflation back within the Reserve Bank target.