Stephen King: We must keep our heads, even if others lose theirs

The inflation-targeting framework in the UK has seemingly been hugely successful over the years. Arguably, though, it's never really been tested in difficult times. Under current circumstances, with inflation rising and house prices falling, will the framework really be able to cope?

Stephen King: Will our central banks make a Freudian slip over their illusory control of price stability?

As oil and other commodity prices rise, there's a sense that our inflationary destiny no longer lies with our central banks

Stephen King: Power unleashed by emerging markets threatens to upset West's economic plans

Like unruly teenagers, the emerging markets will have to make their own mistakes

Stephen King: As safe as houses? How harsh realities are dispelling the home market myths

People are led to believe that homes are automatic generators of additional wealth. This argument is mostly spurious

Stephen King: Give globalisation a human face

Most economists believe that globalisation is a good thing. By breaking down barriers between nations, globalisation leads to a more efficient allocation of labour and capital. Greater efficiency implies higher output and higher output, in turn, makes us all better off. That, at least, is the theory. Globalisation, however, incorporates a core paradox. It reduces income and wealth inequalities between nations yet it seems to increase these inequalities within nations.

Stephen King: Inflation catches banks in a cleft stick

Students of economic developments in the 1970s and 1980s know all too well that the central bank par excellence during those two decades was Germany's Bundesbank. Its reputation in safeguarding the value of its currency, the Deutschmark, was second-to-none. Price stability, year-in, year-out, was supposedly its party trick.

Stephen King: Food protectionism could provoke a crisis on a par with 1970s oil shocks

The biggest threat to the world economy isn't the sub-prime crisis. Nor is it the credit crunch or the US recession. It's food.

Stephen King: From Pope Pius VII to the credit crunch, market failure lives on

If regulators and policymakers fail to deliver, we'll end up with more false hope and moreimpoverishment

Stephen King: Central banks have the power to avert another catastrophic depression

One American bank failure and, apparently, we have proof that market economies just don't work. The move towards ever more deregulation is leading us all into another depression. Greedy capitalists, left to their own devices, will suck the blood out of our economies, leaving the rest of us to suffer ongoing economic hardship.

Stephen King: Ultimately, Mr Darling is keeping his fingers crossed

'As financial markets implode, there are good reasons to think the UK will be more vulnerable than most'

Stephen King: It's time for the Fed to find a good plumber

Monetary policy normally works in the same way as your central heating system. You adjust the monetary thermostat – the policy rate – and wait for the economy either to warm up or cool down. Ben Bernanke and Mervyn King may be jolly clever men but their influence on the economy at large is not so different from your influence on the ambient temperature in your house.

Stephen King: Emerging economies are repeating our old mistakes

So you think we've got an inflation problem? You may be right, but the West's inflation difficulties are nothing compared with the problems now facing many of the so-called "emerging" economies. China now has an inflation rate of 7.1 per cent. Saudi Arabia's inflation rate is 9.0 per cent. Russia's stands at 11.9 per cent. Argentina's inflation rate is, officially, a more modest 8.2 per cent, although many people, including those who work at the IMF, think the true inflation rate is a lot higher.

Stephen King: Misguided thinking of those who say recession would purge the system

I never thought I'd associate the economics profession with sadism, but I'm beginning to wonder. In recent weeks, I've read an increasing number of articles suggesting that a recession would do the world economy a power of good. The protagonists' arguments follow in the best traditions of John Major's approach to economic policy. It was the mild-mannered Mr Major, after all, who once said "If it isn't hurting, it isn't working". But who, though, deserves to be hurt? Shock therapy sometimes works, but policymakers shouldn't bank on this approach all the time.

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