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Jobs, growth, and productivity after coronavirus

Inquiry

Terms of Reference:

  • How much difference can government policy make to economic growth?
  • What are the causes of the gap in the UK’s level of productivity compared to other advanced economies, and why has productivity growth been persistently weak in the aftermath of the 2007-09 financial crisis?
  • How successful has the Government’s pandemic response been in protecting jobs to date, and how can it help reduce and mitigate the economic scarring effects of the pandemic going forward?
  • Do economic statistics adequately capture growth in the modern economy, and what lessons can be learned from the pandemic about the measurement of economic activity?
  • What policies are effective in helping people to reskill, move between occupations and sectors and take advantage of new opportunities? How could these be best implemented in the aftermath of the pandemic, and as technological developments such as artificial intelligence change the nature of work?
  • Does the Government have the right mix of policies and a coherent strategy to promote long-term productivity growth and create new high-quality jobs?
  • Is the Government doing enough to encourage corporate investment?
  • Is the “Plan for Growth” an adequate replacement for the “Industrial Strategy”?
  • Are we in a period characterised by long-term low economic growth (secular stagnation), and if so, what are the implications for Government economic policy?
  • Is the UK well placed to take advantage of future technological breakthroughs and translate them into economic opportunities?

Macroeconomic policy

  • What are the roles of monetary policy and fiscal policy in stabilising the business cycle and promoting growth in the post-pandemic economy?
  • Does the inflation target remain fit-for-purpose, especially in a world where interest rates may be ‘low for long’? Should the MPC target anything else?
  • Does the MPC have effective monetary policy tools to stimulate the economy when interest rates are low?
  • What evidence is there on the relationship between the scale of the public debt and economic growth?
  • Is a return of inflation a risk to the economic recovery?
  • Can monetary and fiscal policy improve employment, growth and/or productivity outcomes by ‘running the economy hot’?

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