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This book was originally published in 2004. Fears of deflation seemed nothing more than a relic of the Great Depression. However, beginning in the 1990s, persistently falling consumer prices have emerged in Japan, China and elsewhere. Deflation is also a distinct possibility in some of the major European area economies, especially Germany, and emerged as a concern of the US Federal Reserve in 2003. Deflation may be worse than inflation not only because the real burden of debt rises but also because firms would confront rising real wages in a world where nominal wage rigidity prevails. This volume explores some key themes regarding deflation including: (i) how economic agents and policy makers have responded to deflation, (ii) the links between monetary policy, goods price movements, and asset price movements, (iii) the impact of deflation under different monetary policy and exchange rate regimes, and (iv) stock market reactions to deflation.


Review of the hardback:‘Slow deflation was once a widely espoused policy goal in its own right, and it still has its supporters. Perhaps more important, potentially deflationary accidents are bound to happen from time to time in a world that has settled for low inflation, because not all shocks emanate from monetary policy. This volume is an indispensable source of wisdom on the variety that deflationary episodes have displayed in the past, and on the many intellectual and practical challenges that they have presented to economists. Burdekin and Siklos are to be congratulated on a collection of essays that is historically illuminating, intellectually challenging, and of current policy relevance, too.’

David Laidler - University of Western Ontario, Canada

Review of the hardback:‘In this volume, a distinguished set of scholars make important contributions to monetary history and to a number of contemporary policy debates including the role, if any, asset prices should play in setting monetary policy, the use of exchange rates as nominal anchors and whether Japan has fallen into a Keynesian liquidity trap. The contributors provide strong support for inflation targeting to avoid not only high inflation, but deflation as well.’

Thomas Willett - The Claremont Colleges

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