Business: The Pre-Election Pulse

Among some healthy-looking numbers, a sad September surprise on prices

During his campaign stop in slump-plagued Youngstown, Ohio, last week, Jimmy Carter pointed to a batch of upbeat statistics and happily assured a group of steelworkers that the battered U.S. economy is "recovering very well." But only four days later, and with little more than a week remaining in Campaign '80, the Government itself reported a shocker that was sure to keep the President's economic stewardship a prime concern of voters on Nov. 4—and push inflation squarely onto center stage again as the nation's No. 1 problem.

After five months of decline, which...

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