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The Graphic Truth: 50 years of US inflation vs interest rates

US inflation is now at its highest level since the 2008 financial crisis, and (as always) economists are divided as to why that is, and what to do about it. Conservative deficit hawks blame big spending by the Biden administration, while liberals who defend Biden's economic agenda believe it's more likely caused by short-term pandemic-related bottlenecks in supply chains. Meanwhile, there's also growing concern that the Federal Reserve is overheating the US economy by keeping interest rates low despite rising inflation, but the Fed is betting that the current spike will be short-lived. Whatever you think, we compare US inflation and interest rates over the past half century, a period in which America has suffered double-digit figures more than once.

Minimum wage may not go up, but expect stimulus checks in April

Jon Lieber, Managing Director of the United States for the Eurasia Group, shares his insights on US politics in Washington, DC:

Is the minimum wage going to $15 an hour?

Probably not. The House of Representatives did include it in the stimulus bill that they're going to pass as soon as next week, but when it gets over to the Senate it's likely to either be stripped out altogether because of a provision of the reconciliation process known as the Byrd Rule, or you could see some moderate Senate Democrats try to push a compromise measure which would raise the minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to something closer to $10 or $11 an hour.

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