When a jet is perturbed by a periodic excitation of suitable frequency, a large-scale coherent structure develops and grows in amplitude as it propagates downstream. The structure eventually rolls up into vortices at some downstream location. The wavy flow associated with the roll-up of a coherent structure is approximated by a parallel mean flow and a small, spatially periodic, axisymmetric wave whose phase velocity and mode shape are given by classical (primary) stability theory. The periodic wave acts as a parametric excitation in the differential equations governing the secondary instability of a subharmonic disturbance. The (resonant) conditions for which the periodic flow can strongly destabilize a subharmonic disturbance are derived. When the resonant conditions are met, the periodic wave plays a catalytic role to enhance the growth rate of the subharmonic. The stability characteristics of the subharmonic disturbance, as a function of jet Mach number, jet heating, mode number and the amplitude of the periodic wave, are studied via a secondary instability analysis using two independent but complementary methods: (1) method of multiple scales, and (2) normal mode analysis. It is found that the growth rates of the subharmonic waves with azimuthal numbers beta = 0 and beta = 1 are enhanced strongly, but comparably, when the amplitude of the periodic wave is increased. Furthermore, compressibility at subsonic Mach numbers has a moderate stabilizing influence on the subharmonic instability modes. Heating suppresses moderately the subharmonic growth rate of an axisymmetric mode, and it reduces more significantly the corresponding growth rate for the first spinning mode. Calculations also indicate that while the presence of a finite-amplitude periodic wave enhances the growth rates of subharmonic instability modes, it minimally distorts the mode shapes of the subharmonic waves.