Deflation: What Happens When Prices Fall

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9780060576455: Deflation: What Happens When Prices Fall
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An analysis of the benefits and consequences of deflation considers the possible link between significant historical deflation and the Great Depression, citing the causes of deflation while arguing for controlled and moderate deflation as a natural part of the economic cycle. 20,000 first printing.

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About the Author:

Chris Farrell, contributing economics editor at BusinessWeek, is an award-winning journalist who started writing about the New Economy in the early 1990s. His cover stories include "Stuck," "Why Are We So Afraid of Growth?," "The Economics of Aging," "Productivity to the Rescue," and "IPO Capitalism." In 1999 and 2000 he received the Gerald Loeb Award in business journalism for two radio documentaries, "The World Turned Upside Down" and "Minnesota in the Dot.com Age." He is cohost and economics editor for Sound Money, a one-hour weekly personal finance call-in show produced by Minnesota Public Radio and syndicated nationally. Farrell is chief economics correspondent for the public radio documentary unit American RadioWorks and a regular commentator for Marketplace. He was host and executive editor of Right on the Money!, a nationally syndicated half-hour public television show, and author of Right on the Money!: Taking Control of Your Personal Finances.

From Booklist:

The mere mention of the word deflation brings to mind the specter of the Great Depression: falling prices means consumers hold off making purchases, waiting for prices to go lower; demand for goods and services falters, profits disappear, and companies begin massive layoffs; the default rate on loans increases, causing bank failures, and so on, in a lethal economic downturn. The fear of deflation is so great that economists dare not even mention the word; but when Alan Greenspan recently used the phrase "an unwelcome substantial fall in inflation," everyone knew he meant the d word, and it sent shock waves through the economic community. Yet Farrell explains that much of the economy is already in a deflationary trend at places such as Wal-Mart and on the Internet and shows why falling prices have long been standard practice in the computer industry. He explains why not all deflation is bad and why mild deflation may be the ideal. The government and investors must be aware of this new trend, and Farrell provides solid recommendations for policy reform and capital investment. David Siegfried
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