The Financial Post reports in its Wednesday edition that Bank of Canada governor Tiff Macklem has a message for employers and politicians: if you do not like higher interest rates, then do something to expand the pool of available workers. The Post's Stephanie Hughes writes that Mr. Macklem says inflation is being driven -- in part -- by acute labour shortages, which have put upward pressure on wages. Average hourly pay increases are growing less quickly than year-over-year increases in the consumer price index, but the BOC still contends that wages will have to slow to get inflation under control.
Mr. Macklem says: "We need to rebalance demand and supply in the labour market to relieve price pressures. Monetary policy affects demand. By raising interest rates, we are moderating spending, and that will reduce the demand for workers." He adds: "The other way to rebalance supply and demand is to increase the supply of workers. That takes time, and with inflation already far too high and with elevated risks that high inflation becomes entrenched, increasing labour supply is not an alternative to slowing demand. But it is a complement. And the more we can do on supply, the less we will need to do on demand."
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