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Inflation is a fact of life. Over time, prices for most goods and services invariably rise. If they fall, it is not for long. Economists even say that a moderate level of inflation is essential to a healthy economy. Readers evaluate what an unhealthy level of inflation is, what causes it, and how a period of high inflation is felt by the average person and his or her family. Readers explore exactly what inflation is, how, at moderate levels, it can help drive a healthy economy, and, at unacceptably high levels, it can destroy purchasing power and continued economic growth. Most importantly, the author reveals the concrete effects that inflation has upon federal, state, and local governments, on local businesses and municipalities, and on individuals and families. Charting exactly how prices rise, paychecks fail to keep pace, and economic activity slows down, this book traces all the many ripple effects of inflation throughout the economy, placing particular emphasis on how inflation affects the daily lives of ordinary people.