Tag: Inflation
Data Show Deflation Except in Health Care (Again)
I admit this is getting a little repetitive, but it is not my fault the Bureau of Labor Statistics releases the Consumer Price Index one day after the Producer Price Index. The CPI confirms (once again) the price behavior indicated by yesterday’s PPI. While consumer prices were down 0.2 percent, month on month, and...
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When Government Fails—Venezuela Edition
Whenever Venezuela comes up in the news the story is rarely good. From massive civil unrest, to rampant shortages, to hyper-inflation, to stories of squatters, the country is probably not on the top of many people’s “places I’d like to visit” list. While we may look at the situation in Venezuela and think, “wow,...
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What Makes a Miserable Country?
Venezuela is the world’s most miserable country, according to a team of researchers at Johns Hopkins University who have calculated a World Misery Index. “Misery” is measured as the sum of a country’s inflation rate, unemployment rate, and interest rate, minus the annual percentage change in real GDP per capita. The higher the total...
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Are Falling Prices a Bad Thing?
Popular opinion seems to be that falling prices—or even stable prices—are bad for the economy, but I’ve never seen any good arguments about why. I’ve just read another article about this, that gives six clearly numbered reasons, so let’s look at what the article says to see if they hold up.
Reining in the Fed
The House of Representatives is currently considering a variety of bills intended to reduce the power of the Federal Reserve System. (“House Republicans Resume Efforts to Reduce Fed’s Power,” New York Times, July 11, Business Section.) Under the pretext of fighting high unemployment, the Fed has more than quadrupled its balance sheet since summer...
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New Video with Ron Paul: “Defining Liberty: The Future of Freedom”
How can Americans overcome record government spending and debt, escalating healthcare costs, intrusive federal surveillance, endless wars, ongoing economic malaise, high unemployment, failing schools, and increasing abuses of civil and economic liberties? In this superb, new video from the recent, sold-out event sponsored by The Independent Institute and The Smith Center for Private Enterprise...
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The Independent Review—Winter Issue Now Available
The winter 2014 issue of The Independent Review is hot off the press! This edition of the Independent Institute’s 160-page scholarly journal includes a stimulating mix of timely topics and enduring themes, including a symposium on Nobel laureate economist James M. Buchanan and classical liberalism. Read it and gain a deeper understanding of the...
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Money for Nothing: Inside the Federal Reserve
I taught Money and Banking for 40 years at Ohio State and before that at Boston College, and never once used a movie in class. However, after viewing Jim Bruce’s new documentary, Money for Nothing: Inside the Federal Reserve last night at the Museum of American Finance, I would not hesitate to use this...
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Venezuela’s Price Police
The Venezuelan government’s war on price inflation is not a metaphorical one—last weekend President Maduro, who owes his title to April’s rigged election, ordered the military takeover of Daka, a chain of electronic stores, and the arrest of several managers from that and other retail companies. The rhetoric employed by Maduro was inevitably interpreted...
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Questions—and Answers—for Janet Yellen
The Senate hearings to confirm Janet Yellen as Federal Reserve Board Chairwoman are likely to be held next week, according to news reports. Here are some Questions that I hope the Senators will ask her, along with what I regard as the Wrong Answers and the Right Answers. I expect that her actual answers...
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