Low Inflation Continues to Disappoint Inflation Hawks

Perhaps you’ve read that inflation is up recently. Last night, for example, NBC News breathlessly told me that the price of eggs had gone up 13 cents over the past year. Does this mean that the inflation worries we’ve been hearing about continuously for the past four years are finally coming true?

I’d be happy if they were, since I think higher inflation would do the economy some good. Sadly, though, inflation remains well anchored. Despite the higher numbers of the past two months, the Fed’s latest projections have increased by….one tenth of a percentage point. Or, if you take the average of their range, by one twentieth of a percentage point, from 1.55 percent to 1.6 percent.

And how about 2015? They’re projecting 1.75 percent. And 2016? A whopping 1.8 percent. In other words, they believe that we’ll continue to undershoot our inflation target for at least the next three years.

At the same time, their projection of GDP growth has plummeted from 2.9 percent to 2.2 percent. And their projections for 2015 and 2016 continue to hover around an anemic 3 percent.

So: we have low growth, low price inflation, low wage inflation, and unemployment is still high. This is really not an environment in which spending cuts and lower deficits are the answer. More here from Mark Thoma.


Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

payment methods

We Recommend