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Ask An Economist: How to Lower Inflation | GZERO World

Ask An Economist: How to lower inflation

US inflation is now at a 40-year high. So, what are we going to do about it?

That depends on where you think the problem is coming from, American economist and University of Chicago professor Austan Goolsbee says on GZERO World with Ian Bremmer.

If inflation is being driven by too much stimulus, like some economists such as 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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Podcast: Making sense of global inflation, looming recession, & economists who disagree

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

What We’re Watching: Global stagflation warning, food fight at the UN, China in Cambodia

World Bank issues stark stagflation warning

The war in Ukraine has frustrated attempts to revive the pandemic-battered global economy, creating an endless loop of bad news. That trend continued Tuesday when the World Bank slashed its global growth forecast to 2.9% – down from a January prediction of 4.1%. (It was 5.7% in 2021.) What’s more, the body warned that “subdued growth” will likely continue throughout the decade and could give rise to 1970s-style stagflation – the double whammy of a stagnant economy coupled with double-digit inflation. But the impacts of the lingering global economic crisis won’t be felt equally. The World Bank says that while wealthy countries like the US and China will experience slower-than-usual growth, developing countries will be hardest hit as borrowing costs rise. This is already playing out: Cash-strapped Sri Lanka was recently forced to default on its sovereign debt for the first time. Crucially, the World Bank also warned that the deepening food crisis could cause social upheaval in import-reliant countries in the near-term.

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Paige Fusco

Will stagflation make a comeback?

America’s fashionistas are super excited these days about 1990s crop tops, baggy outfits, and tattoo chokers, but economists are freaking out over a specter from a different decade: the ’70s. That’s when the US economy sputtered into what's known as “stagflation.”

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