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Inflation: Concepts, Evolution, and Correlates

Jongrim Ha (), Anna Ivanova, Franziska Ohnsorge and Derya Filiz Unsal Portillo Ocando

No 8738, Policy Research Working Paper Series from The World Bank

Abstract: In the past four to five decades, inflation has fallen around the world, with median annual global consumer price inflation down from a peak of 16.6 percent in 1974 to 2.6 percent in 2017. This decline began in advanced economies in the mid-1980s and in emerging market and developing economies in the mid-1990s. By 2000, global inflation had stabilized at historically low levels. Lower inflation has been accompanied by reduced inflation volatility, especially in advanced economies. This improvement in inflation outcomes has stemmed in large part from structural economic changes, including improved monetary and fiscal policy frameworks as well as international trade and financial liberalization. Lower and more stable inflation has often been associated with better growth and development outcomes, partly by reducing uncertainty, fostering a more efficient allocation of resources, and helping preserve financial stability.

Date: 2019-02-13
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