Experts: Inflation at almost two-decade high complicates Bank of Canada rate plan

Published: 27 October 2021

The cost of just about everything in Canada was more expensive in September, pushing headline inflation to its highest in almost two decades and complicating the Bank of Canada’s plans to keep interest rates pinned near zero until well into 2022. Prices are being driven higher around the world by an extreme mismatch between supply and demand. Suppliers are now scrambling to catch up, clogging ports and other transportation lanes that are dealing with their own pandemic-related issues. (Financial Post) 

Here are some experts from McGill University that can provide comment on this issue: 

John Gradek, Faculty Lecturer, School of Continuing Studies 

When images of empty store shelves and container ships in queues off major ports become ubiquitous, something is definitely amiss in supply chain design and execution. To better understand the root causes of these unsettling and persistent glimpses of chaos, one must examine the purchasing behavior of the consumer and the subsequent production and transportation decisions of suppliers and retailers as we try to predict an end to shortages. Will there be an end to this, or will supply chains require a reimagining to reflect consumers’ new buying habits?” 

John Gradek is a Faculty Lecturer in the School of Continuing Studies, where he coordinates the Supply Chain and Operations Management and Integrated Aviation Management programs. He has held senior roles at Air Canada in operations, marketing and planning and has worked in the development and the delivery of commercial airline management programs for the International Aviation Management Training Institute. He is currently an adjudicator with the Transportation Appeal Tribunal of Canada. 

john.gradek [at] (English, French) 

Saibal Ray, James McGill Professor, Desautels Faculty of Management and Academic Director, Bensadoun School of Retail Management

Supply chain problems and their impact have taken over the news cycle as the ‘pandemic news’ wanes. However, it is important to understand the underlying reason for this phenomenon, what are the short-medium term implications and what are the long-term solutions (if any). Especially important is to think about the pros and cons of shorter and perhaps local supply chains and how companies can manage supply chain associated risks.”

Saibal Ray is a James McGill Professor of Operations Management at the Desautels Faculty of Management and the Academic Director of the Bensadoun School of Retail Management. His expertise is in supply chain management, specifically supply chain risk management, retail operations management, and supply chain issues related to agri-food and natural resources sectors.

saibal.ray [at] (English)

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