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ChicagoSchooler
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February 20, 2015, 07:11:03 PM
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February 21, 2015, 12:45:55 AM
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In my opinion, there is no general price level, therefore there is no way to compute the price level change. All prices are individuals comparing alternatives (value pairs), including holding money, in the general market.


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February 21, 2015, 01:12:27 AM
 #3

In my opinion, there is no general price level, therefore there is no way to compute the price level change. All prices are individuals comparing alternatives (value pairs), including holding money, in the general market.


Interesting.  How would you aggregate those value pairs?

You can't, because they change constantly in each individuals mind, and even if you could ask everyone sufficiently often (ask every person every second), they would probably not know, because it is not their needs and wants, it is their action (their actual offer or accept of someone elses offer) that matters. Still, you can imagine the valuations and their aggregate. It is a dynamic, organic system. We see only the resulting prices in the market.




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February 21, 2015, 01:45:31 AM
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You can't, because they change constantly in each individuals mind, and even if you could ask everyone sufficiently often (ask every person every second), they would probably not know, because it is not their needs and wants, it is their action (their actual offer or accept of someone elses offer) that matters. Still, you can imagine the valuations and their aggregate. It is a dynamic, organic system. We see only the resulting prices in the market.

If you believed that the USD has lost X% of its value of Y years, how would you be able to prove that assertion?

It follows that you can not prove it. Since it is money we are talking about, it follows that it can not be consumed directly, therefore, what you get for each dollar is what counts. Personally, I like computers, and I can have more computer value now for 1000 dollars than I could in 1913, or more realistically, when I started to grasp the concept of money in the 60's, or, when I started to accumulate value in the 70's. In that regard, the USD has gained value. On the other hand, I could have a professional paint my house for that sum in the 70's, but not now. A consumer price index has to somehow reflect what consumers tend to buy, but what consumers buy is also directed by the offers available. So fundamentally, it is not possible to say. The different consumer price index calculation methods are at best attempts at approximations.

That is also why it is fundamentally impossible to manage the money. Free everything, and let the market decide.





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February 21, 2015, 02:53:52 AM
 #5

yeah but most people don't even track inflation until it comes down to needing wheelbarrows full of money to pay for a loaf of bread.

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February 21, 2015, 09:57:32 AM
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Personally, I like computers, and I can have more computer value now for 1000 dollars than I could in 1913, or more realistically, when I started to grasp the concept of money in the 60's, or, when I started to accumulate value in the 70's. In that regard, the USD has gained value. On the other hand, I could have a professional paint my house for that sum in the 70's, but not now.

Just for fun, would you mind giving me some figures?

  • The price of the paint job in the 70s on house X
  • The price of the paint job now on house X
  • The price of the 70s computer Y, then
  • The price of the 70s computer Y, now, if you've bought one recently; otherwise, please ignore
  • The price of the computer you bought recently for the same amount of money as the 70s computer Y then

Rough estimates are perfectly fine, and thank you in advance!

The different consumer price index calculation methods are at best attempts at approximations.

I agree with you there, but all sciences suffer from sampling error, even physics.

Computers were totally different, only for businesses, and they cost millions. It is called hedonic quality adjustment in the cpi business. If a smartphone is doubly expensive now compared to  a basic phone was some years ago, phones have not gone up, because the current ones are better. For the house painting, I don't know, I just wanted an example of something that has risen. Services with a high labour content are good candidates, because work is the most general production factor and it rises with prosperity.


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February 21, 2015, 02:21:49 PM
 #7


How about McDonald's hamburgers?  They're ubiquitous, and we have a decent price history available, so could we assume that a hypothetical "you" bought 12 McDonald's hamburgers in 1970 and maybe 6 this year?

wrong, enters gmo, dna modification, pesticides, herbicides, fungicide, plasticization, etc etc. A burger from McDonalds original has nothing to do with one available on the shell of today America. insane.

money is faster...
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February 21, 2015, 03:42:42 PM
 #8

...

price fluctuations are dynamic, they respond to all the fundamentals of the market place, including the necessity fun to wipe out a competitor (of course in a polite, civil matters, it's just papers, and the wheel turns and turns...). FORTUNA

money is faster...
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February 22, 2015, 12:17:34 AM
 #9

Thank you very much for this post. Appreciate it man!

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February 22, 2015, 06:11:47 AM
 #10

Are there more contemporary examples?  With the price of fuel down I expected groceries to be cheaper but I noticed a steep rise recently.  Are we currently experiencing high inflation?  I thought the opposite was true... or at least I heard stories of deflation causing havoc in European car sales markets.

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