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Sofia Anyfantaki

21 September 2021
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 268
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Abstract
The aim of this report is to foster a better understanding of past trends in, and drivers of, productivity growth in the countries of the European Union (EU) and of the interplay between productivity and monetary policy. To this end, a group of experts from 15 national central banks and the European Central Bank (ECB) joined forces and pooled data and expertise for more than 18 months to produce the report. Group members drew on the extensive research already conducted on productivity growth, including within the European System of Central Banks and in the context of the review of the ECB’s monetary policy strategy, and worked together to conduct new analyses.After recalling the key facts and figures, the report looks into the predominant drivers of productivity growth in firms, with a focus on technology as a key determinant of aggregate productivity dynamics. It then discusses the main factors behind resource reallocation both across incumbent firms and as a result of the entry and exit of firms. Although productivity is a real-economy phenomenon and its evolution predominantly hinges on the structural features of the economy and national policies, the report also raises the question of the extent to which, and under what circumstances, monetary policy may affect productivity. In addition, it places productivity in a broader perspective by taking into account other important structural trends that are expected to have an impact on productivity in the medium-to-long run, such as globalisation, population ageing, climate change and digitalisation. Finally, the report considers the possible impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on productivity in EU countries. ...
JEL Code
D22 : Microeconomics→Production and Organizations→Firm Behavior: Empirical Analysis
D24 : Microeconomics→Production and Organizations→Production, Cost, Capital, Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity, Capacity
D61 : Microeconomics→Welfare Economics→Allocative Efficiency, Cost?Benefit Analysis
O33 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Technological Change, Research and Development, Intellectual Property Rights→Technological Change: Choices and Consequences, Diffusion Processes
O47 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity→Measurement of Economic Growth, Aggregate Productivity, Cross-Country Output Convergence
O52 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economywide Country Studies→Europe
21 September 2021
OCCASIONAL PAPER SERIES - No. 266
Details
Abstract
The digitalisation workstream report analyses the degree of digital adoption across the euro area and EU countries and the implications of digitalisation for measurement, productivity, labour markets and inflation, as well as more recent developments during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and their implications. Analysis of these key issues and variables is aimed at improving our understanding of the implications of digitalisation for monetary policy and its transmission. The degree of digital adoption differs across the euro area/EU, implying heterogeneous impacts, with most EU economies currently lagging behind the United States and Japan. Rising digitalisation has rendered price measurement more challenging, owing to, among other things, faster changes in products and product quality, but also new ways of price setting, e.g. dynamic or customised pricing, and services that were previously payable but are now “free”. Despite the spread of digital technologies, aggregate productivity growth has decreased in most advanced economies since the 1970s. However, it is likely that without the spread of digital technologies the productivity slowdown would have been even more pronounced, and the recent acceleration in digitalisation is likely to boost future productivity gains from digitalisation. Digitalisation has spurred greater automation, with temporary labour market disruptions, albeit unevenly across sectors. The long-run employment effects of digitalisation can be benign, but its effects on wages and labour share depend on the structure of the economy and its labour market institutions. The pandemic has accelerated the use of teleworking: roughly every third job in the euro area/EU is teleworkable, although there are differences across countries. ...
JEL Code
E24 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Consumption, Saving, Production, Investment, Labor Markets, and Informal Economy→Employment, Unemployment, Wages, Intergenerational Income Distribution, Aggregate Human Capital
E31 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Price Level, Inflation, Deflation
E32 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles→Business Fluctuations, Cycles
O33 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Technological Change, Research and Development, Intellectual Property Rights→Technological Change: Choices and Consequences, Diffusion Processes
O57 : Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth→Economywide Country Studies→Comparative Studies of Countries