Interesting Inflation News Links (February 22, 2009)

* Laissez-Faire Capitalism Has Failed (Forbes)

It is now clear that this is the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression and the worst economic crisis in the last 60 years. While we are already in a severe and protracted U-shaped recession (the deluded hope of a short and shallow V-shaped contraction has evaporated), there is now a rising risk that this crisis will turn into an uglier, multiyear, L-shaped, Japanese-style stag-defla…

* Climate, conflict top UN chief’s Africa tour (Mail & Guardian)

Ban will pay his first official visits to South Africa and Tanzania, and also travel to DRC, Rwanda and Egypt, with plans for meetings with four presidents and anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela, UN spokesperson Marie Okabe announced on Wednesday.

* Families feel the squeeze as disposable income drops (Times Online)

The average family has seen its disposable income drop by more than �150 a year, despite tumbling inflation, as tax bills rise and wages drop, figures suggest.

* Consumers’ thrift brings new worries (Aldo Svaldi)

With prices for clothes, cars, homes and other items falling, deflation worries have replaced the inflation fears of last summer.

* Bruce Anderson: Brown cannot bank on Chinas stability (The Independent Online)

If matters were not so fraught, we could revel in the intellectual excitement. The world is in the grip of a contradiction. We have a crisis caused by excessive credit, fiscal laxity and asset-price inflation.

* Inflation at wholesale level surges (KABC)

Inflation at the wholesale level surged unexpectedly in January, reflecting sharply higher prices for gasoline and other energy products.

* Inflation will cost pensioners’ hundreds of pounds next year Tories say (James Kirkup., Telegraph)

Inflation figures released on Tuesday show the RPI rate inflation is now 0.1 per cent, the lowest since 1960.

* Economists React: No Serious Deflation Yet (Wall Street Journal)

The consumer price index rose 0.3% in January on a seasonally adjusted basis, the Labor Department said Friday, slightly more than the 0.2% rise Wall Street economists in a Dow Jones Newswires survey had expected. Consumer prices were unchanged compared to one year ago, the lowest rate of change since August 1955 and well below the 2% annual rate of inflation that most Fed officials think is co…

* Experts fear money deluge from Fed will spur inflation (Harold Brubaker, Philadelphia Inquirer)

The Federal Reserve has long been a black box, mysterious in its workings to many economists and little more than a vaguely powerful presence to most Americans.

* Canadas annual inflation rate slows to 1.1 per cent (National Post)

OTTAWA — Inflation in North America is to remain benign for the months — and perhaps years — ahead, analysts say, as a shrinking global economy undercuts commodity prices and inventories in Canada remain at excess levels.

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