Five Reasons Not to Fear Deflation: Which Ones Make Sense?

In a post earlier this week, I explained why a majority of economists fear deflation. They argue that deflation disrupts the operation of financial markets and labor markets in a way that risks touching off a downward spiral. At the same time, they say, deflation weakens the power of monetary policy to reverse the downward […]

How Many Miles Can You Drive on an Hour’s Wages? 100 Years in One Chart

Recently I came across this assertion in a comment box on one of my favorite websites: “The cost to fuel your car has never been higher as a percentage of disposable income.” Really? I know gasoline prices are high, but you just can’t make that assertion without looking at incomes and fuel economy, too. I […]

Should We Worry About Higher Interest Rates?

By Hamid Faruqee: Global interest rates will eventually move higher. We do not know precisely when,  how fast, or how far, but we do know the direction. After a long period of very low interest rates following the global financial crisis, some central banks (mainly, the U.S. Federal Reserve and the Bank of England) are planning […]

Confessions of an Inflation Truther

There is a group of folks who believe that inflation is much higher than the numbers in the official reports. Paul Krugman calls them “inflation truthers.” In the 2000s, I might have been considered part of that crowd. I recognized that inflation data wasn’t being reported accurately, and said as much. I coined the phrase “inflation ex-inflation” […]

Euro Area – Q&A on QE

By Reza Moghadam and Ranjit Teja: As inflation has sunk in the euro area, talk of quantitative easing (QE)—and misgivings about it—have soared. Some think QE is not needed; others that it would not work; and yet others that it only creates asset bubbles and may even be “illegal.” In its latest report on the euro area, the IMF assesses […]