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Paige Fusco

The Graphic Truth: Rich countries feel inflation pinch

Japan’s inflation rate hit 4% last month. Sounds low, right? Compared to many Western countries, it is. But for Japanese consumers, it’s the highest spike in prices since 1981. As a result, the Bank of Japan is under increasing pressure to raise its key interest rate from -0.1%, where it’s been since 2016. Japan’s central bankers are far from alone. In fact, on Wednesday, the Bank of Canada again boosted its benchmark interest rate, this time to 4.5%, but also became the first major central bank to announce it plans to hold off on further rate hikes for now. Most wealthy countries have felt the price crunch due to high energy costs, COVID supply chain issues, and the war in Ukraine. We compare inflation numbers for the past year across all G-7 countries.

3 reasons risk of global recession in 2023 has increased
3 Reasons Risk of Global Recession in 2023 Has Increased | IMF's Kristalina Georgieva | GZERO World

3 reasons risk of global recession in 2023 has increased

A global recession is looming in 2023. But why?

Speaking to Ian Bremmer on GZERO World, IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva offers three reasons.

First, all the big economies — the US, China, and the Eurozone — are slowing down at the same time.

Second, inflation shows no signs of abating.

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Focus on Africa: hunger, energy, climate - and the path to growth

Sub-Saharan Africa was on the brink of economic recovery last year. Now, the World Bank expects its growth to slow in 2023. With global inflation on the rise, rising food and fuel costs “actually put lives at risk in a way few other shocks can," says International Monetary Fund (IMF) senior economist Andrew Tiffin.

And sub-Saharan Africa is particularly vulnerable: 123 million people there are currently food-insecure, while the region accounts for 6% of the global energy demand. With climate change exponentially leading to those numbers rising, Tiffin says: “Any globally viable discussion has to take into account Africa’s concerns and needs. Because without that, there is simply no solution.”

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Podcast: Making sense of global inflation, looming recession, & economists who disagree

Transcript

Listen: Did US inflation come from supply, or did it come from demand? On the GZERO World podcast, Ian Bremmer speaks with economist and University of Chicago professor Austan Goolsbee about the causes of the current high levels of inflation in the US and around the world. If inflation is being driven by too much stimulus, as economists like Larry Summers believe, Goolsbee believes the Federal Reserve is doing the right thing by raising interest rates to cool demand. But if inflation is mostly due to the war in Ukraine or supply chain disruptions, rate hikes might result in stagflation.

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Paige Fusco

The Graphic Truth: Rich countries feel inflation pinch

The international media have been intently focused on the dire inflationary trend in the United States, where inflation recently hit 8.6% — a 40-year high. Indeed, this swing prompted the Federal Reserve to step in this week and implement its largest interest rate hike since 1994. But the US is just one of many advanced economies feeling the burn of sluggish growth and inflation. In fact, several large economies have experienced even bigger rises in inflation over the past year. We compare these numbers for all G7 countries: the US, Germany, France, Italy, Japan, the UK, and Canada.

This comes to you from the Signal newsletter team of GZERO Media. Subscribe for your free daily Signal today.


Wads of British Pound Sterling banknotes.

Reuters

Hard Numbers: British inflation soars, Spain adopts menstrual leave, COVID stimulus gambler fesses up, Schröder to be evicted

9: Inflation in the UK has risen to 9%, a four-decade high, as Britons grapple with the worst cost-of-living crisis in half a century. Energy bills for the average household rose by almost £700 ($865) a year in April, and the Bank of England warns that the surge will likely worsen this fall.

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REUTERS/Cagla Gurdogan

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Is Global Economic Inequality Getting Worse? | Global Stage | GZERO Media

Is global economic inequality getting worse?

Yes, said the majority of respondents in a recent GZERO poll.

What's happening in Ukraine has undone much of the momentum for narrowing the equality gap created during the pandemic, said Ian Bremmer, president of Eurasia Group and GZERO Media, during a Global Stage livestream conversation hosted by GZERO in partnership with Microsoft. The event was held on site at the headquarters of the World Bank in Washington, DC , and was moderated by Jeanna Smialek, Federal Reserve reporter at The New York Times. The war has aggravated pre-existing problems like high inflation and supply chain disruptions. A cease-fire would help end all this, but don't count on it.

This week the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund are holding their annual spring meetings. The conflict is top and center on the agenda, as is financial assistance to first help Ukraine keep the lights on and someday rebuild when the Russians leave.

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