PHASE II: Progress in Prices

PHASE II

President Nixon's advisers had warned that prices might well show a "bulge" in December, the first full month after the freeze was over. They were right. For wholesale prices, the increase turned out to be .7%—a sharp rise but still less than the one that "I had been prepared to defend," said Chief Presidential Economist Herbert Stein. When the consumer price index for December was released last week, Stein still felt comfortable. The nation's basic cost-of-living measure rose .4%. Though high for a month, it showed that inflationary pressure pent up during the freeze was less than expected. Moreover...

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