Whether yesterday's shocker of a Consumer Price Index (CPI) number is enough to keep inflation hawks down remains to be seen. But for now, the urgent warnings from some economists that fiscal stimulus would only cause massive inflation looks to have been, well, a tad wide of the mark.
The warning that the pandemic would cause a supply-side shock that would send inflation soaring and deliver a '70s-style burst of stagflation was mainly an overseas fashion earlier this year.
That noted fan of government debt, Ken Rogoff, warned of "generalised shortages" that would push inflation up. British economist Tim Congdon fretted that "the Federal Reserve’s preparedness to finance the coronavirus-related spending may prove suicidal to its long-term reputation as an inflation fighter ... the state can create money out of thin air, but it cannot create new goods and services in the same way. If too much money is manufactured on banks’ balance sheets, a big rise in inflation should be expected."