Wednesday, February 06, 2008

The Harvey Dent economy

The economy.... is turning into the deadly Two-Face. Impeding recession pushes interest rates down, but looming inflation would push them up.

The money quote:
He said he expects core inflation, which strips out volatile food and energy costs, to remain above 2 percent, "which is above the range I consider to be consistent with price stability."

Lacker also said it was worrisome to see inflation at current levels. The overall consumer price index rose 4.1 percent in the 12 months to December, while the core rate, which excludes energy and food, climbed 2.4 percent.

"We can't cut interest rates as aggressively in response to weakness in growth as we otherwise would," Lacker said. "We're going to be posed with some problems this year if inflation doesn't moderate the way we'd like to see it moderate."

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