With incredible headlines like these, who can believe inflation is the “proper” target?

It´s from The Economist over a span of 17 years!

In 2014: Politicians and central bankers are not providing the world with the inflation it needs; some economies face damaging deflation instead

IT IS a pernicious threat, all the more so because, at its onset, it seems almost benign. After two generations of fighting against inflation, why be worried if the victory looks just a bit too complete, if the ancient enemy is so cowed as to no longer strain against the chains in which it is bound? But the stable low inflation fought for in the 1980s and 1990s and inflation hazardously close to zero are not so far apart. And as inflation drops, slipping into deflation becomes ever easier. It is in that dangerous position that the world now stands.

In 1997: “America’s inflation rate is low and stable. This has rekindled an old debate over the benefits of price stability

But how low should inflation go? Many economists argue that a small amount of it may not be a bad thing and could even be beneficial. One of the first was James Tobin of Yale University, who suggested in 1972 that a bit of inflation helps “grease the wheels” of the economy. In today’s world of low inflation, the validity of his argument is increasingly important for policy-makers. If it is correct, then the pursuit of extremely low levels of inflation may be misguided—not only because of the short-term rise in unemployment that can result from cutting inflation, but also because zero inflation might cause permanently and unnecessarily higher levels of unemployment. This is why the concept of inflation as economic grease has become the focus of controversy anew.

The charts indicate very clearly that the problem does not reside with the level of inflation but with the level of nominal spending, even if at present you “pull-down” both the level and growth rate of nominal spending. A large gap is still present!

Incredible headlines_0

Incredible headlines

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