Due Wednesday August 31
Instructions. You can but do not have to do this assignment in a group. If you work in a group, it
can have at most three people. The assignment is due by 4pm on Wednesday August 31 in Canvas.
The submission process will have two steps:
(i) Group formation : Students wanting to submit as a group will first need to form their assignment
group in Canvas, further instructions to be provided in your tutorials. Students must form their
assignment group with students from the same tutorial, up to three people. Students completing
the assignment alone do not need to form a group. Assignment groups must be formed no later
than 10am on Monday August 29. This is a strict deadline and cannot be extended.
(ii) Submission : Assignments can only be submitted after group formation has closed, i.e., from
10am on August 29. Assignments are submitted through the Assignments section in Canvas,
further details to be provided in a Canvas announcement beforehand.
Late assignments. Late assignments will not be accepted. Please apply for Special Consideration
if for some documented reason you cannot submit by the due deadline.
Marking criteria. The tutors will mark the assignment according to the following criteria:
â€¢ Ability to use material discussed in lectures, tutorials, and other sources to complete the assignment tasks in a logical and coherent fashion (90% weight).
â€¢ Overall presentation of the assignment. This includes spelling, grammar, correct construction
of figures, referencing sources etc (10% weight).
â€¢ The maximum assignment length is 800 words.
â€¢ The University of Melbourne and the teaching staff take academic integrity seriously. Plagiarism
and collusion are unacceptable. Further details can be found in the subject guide.
Please also note:
â€¢ All assignments must be typed. Handwritten assignments will not be accepted.
â€¢ Use a spreadsheet program or similar to prepare figures etc. Figures must be carefully labelled.
â€¢ Due care must be taken to ensure submitted files are not excessively large.
Intro Macro: Assignment #1
Inflation and the â€˜Aftermathâ€™ of the Pandemic
In this assignment you will collect and interpret macroeconomic data for Australia and some other
countries during the â€˜aftermathâ€™ (if indeed thatâ€™s what weâ€™re in?) of the Covid pandemic. To collect
this information you will need to do some original research and download data from national statistical
agencies, as discussed below.
Task #1 Australia (5 marks). Use the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) website
to download data covering the period January 2011â€“present for the following macroeconomic concepts
(i) nominal GDP [referred to as â€˜GDP at current pricesâ€™] (quarterly)
(ii) real GDP [referred to as â€˜chain volume GDPâ€™] (quarterly)
(iii) employment/population ratio (monthly)
(iv) CPI inflation [â€˜all groups CPIâ€™] (quarterly)
Note that some of these variables are measured quarterly (4 times per year) and others are measured
monthly (12 times per year). Use seasonally adjusted data.
Use a spreadsheet program to plot each of these four variables over the period January 2011â€“present.
Plot nominal GDP and real GDP as indexes with the last quarter of 2019 indexed to 100. Plot the
employment/population ratio as a percentage. Plot the CPI inflation rate as both a quarterly rate
and a year-on-year annual rate.
Since the early 1990s, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) has had an official inflation target of â€˜2-3
percent on average over timeâ€™. Discuss to what extent the RBA has been successful in meeting this
objective in recent years. Does the recent rise in inflation create a difficult challenge for the RBA?
Why or why not?
Task #2 International Experiences (5 marks). Choose two from the following four countries:
â€¢ Japan. Statistics Japan, https://www.e-stat.go.jp/en
â€¢ South Korea. Statistics Korea, http://kostat.go.kr/portal/eng/index.action
â€¢ United Kingdom. Office for National Statistics, https://www.ons.gov.uk/
â€¢ United States. Bureau of Economic Analysis https://www.bea.gov/ (for national accounts),
and Bureau of Labor Statistics https://www.bls.gov/ (for labour market and inflation data)
Intro Macro: Assignment #1
For each of the two countries you choose, use the statistical agencies listed (or other sources) to
download data covering the period January 2011â€“present for the same four macroeconomic concepts
(nominal GDP, real GDP, employment/population ratio, and inflation) as discussed for Australia.
Each country uses slightly different terminology, so be alert for that. Research is messy.
Again use a spreadsheet program to plot each of these four variables over the period January 2011â€“
present. Plot nominal GDP and real GDP as indexes with the last quarter of 2019 indexed to 100.
Plot the employment/population ratio as a percentage and CPI inflation at an annual rate.
Discuss the macroeconomic experiences of the two countries you choose during the â€˜aftermathâ€™ of
the pandemic. What are the most important features? Have these two countries have similar or
dissimilar experiences to Australia? Explain.
Replication File. You must be able to replicate these calculations if we ask you to. To that end,
you must keep a single spreadsheet recording the Australian data and the international data you
downloaded and the figures you made using this data. If we have questions about your assignment,
we will ask you for this file.
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