Stylized Facts and Stylized Illusions: Inflation and Productivity Revisited
Recent estimates of a negative empirical relationship between inflation and the rate of growth of productivity provide a strong case for vigorous anti-inflationary policy. This paper tests the robustness of this evidence using long quarterly and annual datasets for four countries (Canada, United States, United Kingdom, West Germany). Our results from cointegration and other time series tests show no evidence for any connection between inflation and the level of productivity. We do find a strong connection between inflation and productivity growth, but it is so internally inconsistent as to be incredible. The best explanation is that it is accounted for entirely by statistical bias from attempting to cointegrate stationary and non-stationary variables.
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Volume (Year): 29 (1996)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
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