New issue of the Riksbank’s journal Economic Review

News This year’s first issue of Sveriges Riksbank Economic Review begins with three articles about important structural changes in the Swedish economy. The first two articles describe and study the significance of the labour market for the Swedish economy. Labour supply and the functioning of the labour market affect price and wage setting, and thus the appropriate stance of monetary policy. The third article discusses the major changes in the payment market from the perspective of history and academic research. Finally, this issue contains a fourth article that describes how the operations of the Riksbank have been organised and how they have changed over the past decades.

The articles in the first issue of the Riksbank’s journal Economic Review for 2019

Can immigration solve the problem of an ageing population?

Åsa Olli Segendorf and Emelie Theobald take up the question of whether immigration can help solve the demographic challenge posed by an ageing population. The answer to this question is complex. Studies show that immigration can help to improve the situation, but this depends on how well their integration into the labour market functions. The authors also discuss the monetary policy consequences of a migration-driven population increase and say that these are largely determined by what extent those born abroad can get jobs.

A changed labour market – effects on prices and wages, the Phillips curve and the Beveridge curve

Magnus Jonsson and Emelie Theobald analyse why developments in inflation and wages in have been slow in Sweden since the global financial crisis 2008–2009. This article focuses on what role the Swedish labour market may have played in this development. First, the authors present empirical evidence indicating that the labour market has changed since the financial crisis and that this may have affected its functioning. Then they show that, in a macroeconomic model with search and matching frictions, several of these changes tend to lead to lower prices and wages and a lower trade-off between nominal wage increases and unemployment. The results show that the changes in the labour market can be a significant reason for the low rate of inflation since the crisis.

Payment systems – history and challenges

Paola Boel has written an overview of the payment systems and the important changes taking place in this field, mainly due to technological innovations. One such important change is that cash is playing a less important role and that different forms of real-time payments are taking on greater significance. In the article the author discusses this development and what challenges it entails for the central banks in the light of the historical evolution of payment systems and the insights derived from the literature on the economics of payments.

The Riksbank’s organisation and operations – a look back through history

Kai Barvèll, Marianne Nessén and Mikael Wendschlag describe the work conducted at the Riksbank and how the internal organisation has changed in recent decades. The Riksbank’s operations are often described in terms of the monetary policy objective and the task of promoting a safe and efficient payment system. But these are only part of the work done at the bank. This article is an attempt to provide a more comprehensive picture of all of the Riksbank’s areas of responsibility.

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Updated 13/06/2019