Paul Krugman: Inflation Unlikely
According to his Op-Ed today, which I found comforting:
[...] don’t such actions [i.e. buying lots of debt both from the government and from the private sector] have to be inflationary sooner or later? No. The Bank of Japan, faced with economic difficulties not too different from those we face today, purchased debt on a huge scale between 1997 and 2003. What happened to consumer prices? They fell.Boom! Rebutted!
[...] it’s hard to escape the sense that the current inflation fear-mongering is partly political, coming largely from economists who had no problem with deficits caused by tax cuts but suddenly became fiscal scolds when the government started spending money to rescue the economy. And their goal seems to be to bully the Obama administration into abandoning those rescue efforts.
Needless to say, the president should not let himself be bullied. The economy is still in deep trouble and needs continuing help.