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  • 2019 Federal Budget Analysis February 27, 2019
    Watch this space for response and analysis of the federal budget from CCPA staff and our Alternative Federal Budget partners. More information will be added as it is available. Commentary and Analysis  Aim high, spend low: Federal budget 2019 by David MacDonald (CCPA) Budget 2019 fiddles while climate crisis looms by Hadrian Mertins-Kirkwood (CCPA) Organizational Responses Canadian Centre for Policy […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • Boots Riley in Winnipeg May 11 February 22, 2019
    Founder of the political Hip-Hop group The Coup, Boots Riley is a musician, rapper, writer and activist, whose feature film directorial and screenwriting debut — 2018’s celebrated Sorry to Bother You — received the award for Best First Feature at the 2019 Independent Spirit Awards (amongst several other accolades and recognitions). "[A] reflection of the […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • CCPA-BC welcomes Emira Mears as new Associate Director February 11, 2019
    This week the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives – BC Office is pleased to welcome Emira Mears to our staff team as our newly appointed Associate Director. Emira is an accomplished communications professional, digital strategist and entrepreneur. Through her former company Raised Eyebrow, she has had the opportunity to work with many organizations in the […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • Study explores media coverage of pipeline controversies December 14, 2018
    Supporters of fossil fuel infrastructure projects position themselves as friends of working people, framing climate action as antithetical to the more immediately pressing need to protect oil and gas workers’ livelihoods. And as the latest report from the CCPA-BC and Corporate Mapping Project confirms, this framing has become dominant across the media landscape. Focusing on pipeline […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
  • Study highlights ‘uncomfortable truth’ about racism in the job market December 12, 2018
    "Racialized workers in Ontario are significantly more likely to be concentrated in low-wage jobs and face persistent unemployment and earnings gaps compared to white employees — pointing to the “uncomfortable truth” about racism in the job market, according to a new study." Read the Toronto Star's coverage of our updated colour-coded labour market report, released […]
    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
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The Progressive Economics Forum

Deflation Continues

This morning’s consumer price figures for August are reminiscent of July. The annual Consumer Price Index decline was 0.8% (compared to 0.9% last month.) With the exception of July, August was the sharpest drop in consumer prices since 1953.

In both July and August, eight of ten provinces posted negative inflation rates. The only province with positive inflation in both months was Saskatchewan, where the cost of living continues to rise.

As in previous months, negative inflation reflects lower gasoline prices in 2009 versus 2008. There is little evidence of a generalized decline in prices that could greatly prolong the recession through a deflationary spiral.

Core inflation, the Bank of Canada measure that excludes gasoline and other volatile items, is still positive. However, August was the third consecutive month in which the core rate decreased. This fact suggests that the underlying inflation trend is downward rather than upward.

Lower core inflation has implications for monetary policy. In its last interest-rate announcement, the Bank of Canada alluded to quantitative easing – “the framework outlined in the April MPR” – as a possible response to the soaring Canadian dollar. This morning’s numbers confirm that it has room to make such an intervention without spurring excessive inflation in Canada.

Today’s numbers also bear on the deficit debate. Some commentators have argued that the Fiscal Update should have been more aggressive in balancing the budget. A significant rationale for reigning-in fiscal stimulus is to avoid stoking inflation. However, inflation does not appear to be a major threat.

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