The Lesser Of Two Evils

Inflation or Unemployment which is worse?

http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/95504389/
Library of Congress: “Forgotten women,” unemployed and single, in job demand parade, Dec 7, 1933

During the Great Depression unemployment hit an all-time high of 25 % for all workers and over 35% for non-farm workers, (http://www.econlib.org/library/Enc/GreatDepression.html) With no jobs and no pay people went hungry, lost homes and lost hope.

 

childrenplayingwithstacksofhyperinflatedcurrencyduringtheweimarrepublic1922
Hyperinflated Weimar currency being used as a toy. http://rarehistoricalphotos.com/children-playing-stacks-hyperinflated-currency-weimar-republic-1922/

Inflation is also painful.  When prices rise, wages take a while to catch up, leaving workers with less purchasing power.  And hyperinflation – extremely fast as in daily or hourly – price increases, can shut an economy down.

This week we look at how the unemployment rate and inflation rate are calculated. As with GDP we will consider the reasons that the statistics may under- or over-estimate true unemployment and inflation.  Aside from the big three there are other measures used to assess the economy.  We will take a look at some of those as well.

Before Class:

 

 

 

 

 

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