Concept, Measurement and Policy Implications of the NAIRU [E-Book]: Perspective from Belgium / Joost Verlinden
Verlinden, Joost.
Paris : OECD Publishing, 1997
25 p. ; 21 x 29.7cm.
OECD Economics Department Working Papers ; 184
Full Text
The use of the NAIRU-concept is not very widespread in Belgium. This may be partly due to an observed unemployment rate that is probably significantly higher than the NAIRU for most of the past two decades. Government policy to halve the administrative notion of unemployment by the beginning of the next century has therefore little regard for the NAIRU level. A second reason for the low popularity of the NAIRU resides in the fact that the measurement issues are seen as enormous. Confidence intervals for NAIRU estimates are notably high. From partial information on the last economic cycle in 1987-94, the deduction is nevertheless that the NAIRU would be in the 7-8 per cent range.Instead of finding exact estimates for the NAIRU, the paper looks into the wage formation process in Belgium in the long and short run. Although total factor productivity is the main long-term influence of real wages, in the short term labour market pressure is clearly the main determining factor. It is ...