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The Use and Abuse of Inflation History

For months, many macroeconomic observers have been likening Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s unenviable position to that of Fed Chair Paul Volcker in the early 1980s. But the differences between the two eras are greater than the similarities – and all of them make Powell’s job relatively easier.

PRINCETON – George Santayana famously observed that, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” But allow me to offer a corollary: Those who misremember the past may be led into error by misreading history.