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Wage inflation and informal work
Despite very low unemployment in the United States in recent months, wage inflation has remained modest. This paper investigates the possibility that there is hidden labor market slack in the form of informal or gig economy work, which may help explain this wage growth puzzle. Using unique data from 2015 and 2016 that we collected through the Survey of Informal Work Participation ? part of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York?s Survey of Consumer Expectations ? we find indirect and direct evidence for this hypothesis. First, we find that a measure of informal labor is negatively associated ...
Non-Linear Phillips Curves with Inflation Regime-Switching
Building on the results in Nalewaik (FEDS 2015-93), this work models wage growth and core PCE price inflation as regime-switching processes, whose characteristics in the 1970s, 1980s and early 1990s differ fundamentally from their characteristics in the 1960s and from the mid-1990s to present. The key innovation here is the addition to the models of fundamental driving variables like labor-market slack, and the evidence strongly suggests a non-linear effect of slack on wage growth and core PCE price inflation that becomes much larger after labor markets tighten beyond a certain point. The ...
The Death of the Phillips Curve?
Are inflation dynamics well captured by Phillips Curve models, or has this framework become less relevant over time? The evidence for the U.S. suggests that the slopes of the price and wage Phillips Curves? the short-run inflation-unemployment trade-offs ? are low and have got a little flatter. For example, the recursive estimate of the unemployment coefficient in the core PCE Phillips Curve has fallen a little from -0.09 to -0.07 since the Great Recession. However, the decline is not statistically significant. Dynamic forecasts from the wage and price Phillips Curves estimated using data ...
The Long-Term Unemployed and the Wages of New Hires
This is the third in a series of blog posts on the topic of measuring labor market slack. In this post, we assess the relationships between short- and long-term unemployment and wages by comparing the differences in states? experiences over the business cycle. While all states felt the impact of the Great Recession, some fared better than others. Consequently, it is possible to use differences in the composition and shifts of short- and long-term unemployment to determine whether short-term unemployment exerts a greater influence on wage determination. The results suggest that there is little ...