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Saturday, September 29, 2012

Fed Watch: Is Low Inflation Always Good?

Tim Duy:

Is Low Inflation Always Good?, by Tim Duy: I was intrigued by something Scott Sumner wrote last week:

I’d also point out that the US has experienced 3 major equity or residential real estate bubbles in periods of relatively low inflation and NGDP growth (1929, 2000, 2006) and zero major bubbles in periods with high inflation and NGDP growth (1968-81). The 1987 stock market bubble was an intermediate case (which did zero harm, as NGDP continued growing after the bubble.)

I was further intrigued when I saw this chart from the IMF (h/t FT Alphaville):


This was from a chapter covering the history of all situation in which public debt rose above 100 percent of GDP. See the gap in the timeline? The relatively high inflation late 1960's and 1970's. Another reason to at least think about the possibility that while high and variable inflation is not ideal, perhaps neither is very low inflation.

    Posted by on Saturday, September 29, 2012 at 10:03 AM Permalink  Comments (42)


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